Thursday, February 21, 2013

chocolate chip ginger molasses cookies

I'm about to make a very bold statement. In fact, you might want to sit down for this one. Are you ready? Here it goes: This is my favorite recipe. Full stop. No caveat. Game over. My one true baking love, my desert island dessert recipe, the cookies I would save in a fire. Since first discovering this recipe back in 2008, I've made these cookies dozens of times. I've baked them for birthday parties and for barbecues, sent them to friends across the country and neighbors across the hall, and made them in every combination and variation imaginable. I once even unintentionally omitted the baking soda, and they were still delicious (albeit flat as pancakes).
The magic of these cookies is that they combine the basic (chocolate chip cookies) and the unexpected (candied ginger) into something familiar enough to be comforting, but interesting enough to be exciting. They're what I bake when I want an easy, no-fail recipe, what I bake when I want something knock-your-socks-off impressive, and what I bake when I just want to eat a delicious cookie. They're also the emergency stash of dough I keep in my freezer for the type of disastrous days that only a cookie can cure.

I've written about these cookies before, back in the early days of this blog, but they're so special I decided they deserved a second mention. (And, let's be real, better photographs since I had no idea what I was doing with a camera back then.) As much as I love trying new recipes, there are certain standbys I return to time and time again, and I think it's high time I start highlighting those as well. So what are you waiting for? Get into the kitchen. Bake some cookies. And save one for me. They are my favorite after all.

Chocolate Chip Ginger Molasses Cookies
Adapted ever so slightly from Molly Wizenberg at Orangette who is a cookie genius

2 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips (I like Guittard)
generous 1/2 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter at room temperature
1/4 cup vegetable shortening at room temperature (I prefer Spectrum brand, which is trans fat free)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1/4 cup unsulphured molasses (not blackstrap)

Combine the flour, spices, baking soda, salt, chocolate chips, and ginger in a medium bowl. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and shortening until combined. Add the sugars, and beat until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the egg and the molasses, and beat well to blend. Add the flour mixture, half at a time, and beat until just incorporated. Cover the bowl and chill for 1-2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 350. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Roll the dough into two inch balls and place 2 inches apart on the baking sheets (about 8 per sheet). Bake until cracked but still soft to the touch, about 12 minutes. Cool on the baking sheets for 1 minute, until firm enough to move, and then transfer to wire racks to cool.


Molly said...

Rachel, your post made my day! Thank you! I hope my tombstone someday says, "COOKIE GENIUS."

A Bitchin' Kitchen said...

These look SO good. My favorite cookie recipe contains molasses too - I think it does something to cookies to make them addictive!