I’ll be honest: my baking skills leave much to be desired. Basically the only things I can bake are cookies. My little brother can whip up a batch of macarons like it’s nobody’s business, but I struggle to make my chocolate chip cookies the right texture. But that’s what’s so cool about cookies. They’re pretty much all delicious and there are so many different varieties, most of which are pretty easy to make.
During the holiday season I seem to eat more cookies than normal. My grandparents live about fifteen minutes from campus, and every week or so they send a different box of homemade cookies. I think if its possible to have too many cookies, I do. But its been fun to try types of cookies I didn’t even know existed. I mean, I’d never had a caramel coconut cookie before. Or the chocolate cranberry cookies that turned out to be surprisingly delicious. Cookies are the ultimate platform for countless combinations of interesting foods.
That said I definitely have favorites. My favorites are anything gingery. I made these chocolate gingerbread cookies several years ago and fell in love.
Chocolate Gingerbread Cookies:
7 oz semi-sweet chocolate
1 ½ cups tbsp all-purpose flour
1 ¼ tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp ground cloves
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
1 tbsp unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
8 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tbsp freshly grated ginger
½ cup dark-brown sugar, packed
½ cup unsulfured molasses
1 tsp baking soda
½ cup granulated sugar
First, chop chocolate into ¼ inch chunks. In a medium bowl, sift flour, ground ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and cocoa. In an electric mixer with paddle attachment, beat butter and grated ginger until whitened, about 4 minutes.
Add brown sugar and beat until combined. Add molasses and beat until combined. In a small bowl, dissolve baking soda in 1 ½ tsp boiling water. Beat ½ of flour mixture into butter mixture. Beat in baking-soda mixture and then rest of the flour mixture. Mix in chocolate; turn out onto a piece of plastic wrap. Pat dough out to 1 inch thick and then seal the wrap and refrigerate until firm (2 hours or more).
Heat oven to 325 degrees. Roll dough into 1 ½ inch balls and place 2 inches apart on baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Refrigerate 20 minutes. Roll in granulated sugar. Bake until the surfaces crack slightly. Let cool and transfer to a cooling rack. Enjoy!