Up at my cottage there is a bakery that makes the most amazingly delicious ginger cookies. They are moist, sweet, but not too sweet, and Rol and I can crush a bag of 12 of them in minutes. The secret is caramels, those cube like sticky candies.
I decided I'd add it in to my gingercookie recipe this year. I wish I'd also had candied ginger or preserved ginger to add into the cookies.
Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 10 - 12 mins @ 325
Yeild: ~60 cookies
2.5 C flour
1 tsp baking soda
1.5 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves^
1/2 C butter
1.75 C caster (superfine) sugar [divided]*
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 black strap molasses
12 caramels, unwrapped and chopped
1/2 - 1 cup candied or preserved ginger chopped
Line two to four baking sheets with parchment paper or silicon baking sheets.
Sift the flour, baking soda and spices together.
Cream together the butter and 2/3rds of the sugar.* Add in vanilla and molasses. Lightly beat the egg and then add to mixture. I used the paddle attachment on the stand mixer.
Remove bowl from standmixer and using a wooden spoon combine dry ingredients with wet ingredients. I added the dry ingredients in four parts. Add in caramel pieces just before finishing mixing. By the end I gave up on the spoon and just used my hands to mix it up.
Roll the dough into 2cm/0.75in balls. Roll each ball in sugar and place on the prepared baking sheets spaced about 5cm/2in apart, since these like to spread. Dip the top of the cookie into the candied or preserved ginger and press down to get it to stick to the top.
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until cookies are just firm to the touch. I bake these in two cookie sheet batches (i.e., 24 cookies) at a time.
*Ready for some math! 2/3 of 1.75C = 2/3 x 7/4 = 14/12 = 7/6, which is 1C + 1/6 of a cup. The remaining sugar for coating is 1/3 of 1.75C = 1/3 x 7/4 = 7/12, somewhere between 1/3 of a cup (6/18 = 1/3) and 1/2 of a cup (6/12 = 1/2)
^ if all you have is all-spice, use a 1/2 tsp of this in place of the cinnamon and nutmeg.