This is a gingersnap recipe that both my Mum and I used to make with my Grandma. Sadly, she passed away a few years ago. We always make them during the holidays; partly as a way to remember her, and partly because they are delicious.
This recipe started out as the Western Produce Catalog's Gingersnaps. It has, however, been modified through the years and turned into Ruby (my grandma)'s Gingersnaps. Be warned they are GINGER snaps, heavy on the ginger, unlike most store bought and coffee shop varieties.
I hope you enjoy, and that maybe they work their way into your traditions; I know she would have loved that.
Step 1: Ingredients & Equipment
- Mixing bowl (~10L)
- Beaters (Or patience and a sturdy spoon)
- Baking Sheets (As many as will fit in your oven)
- Plate (Or bowl)
- Cutting Board & Knife (Or food processor)
- (1/2 Cup) 125ml Softened Butter or Shortening
- (2 Cups) 500ml Packed BROWN Sugar
- (1/2 Cup) 125ml Molasses (Blackstrap if possible)
- (1 Teaspoon) 15ml Fresh Ground Black Pepper (Or to taste)
- 2 Eggs (Whole)
- (4 Cups) 1L of Flour
- (1/2 Teaspoon) 2.5ml (~2.7g) of Salt
- (4 Teaspoons) 20ml of Baking Soda
- (2 Tablespoons) 30ml Cinnamon
- (2 Tablespoons) 30ml of Ground Cloves
- (2 Tablespoons) 30ml Powdered Ginger
- (4 Tablespoons) Large Grained Sugar (or plain white)
- (~1/2 Cup) ~125ml Candied Ginger (Check the bulk section of your grocery store)
We made half of the batch with the candied ginger and half without, to suit different tastes.
Step 2: Prep Work
Start by preheating the oven to (350°F) 150 C°.
Using the knife and cutting board, break down the candied ginger into 0.5 cm cubes. Once there, set half aside and break down the other half into about half the size it was (0.25 cm cubed).
Next, in a bowl or on a plate toss the smaller ginger in the 2 tablespoons of large grained sugar. They should separate and stop sticking to each other once they are covered in sugar; if not give them some help by separating them.
Step 3: Mix Wet Ingredients
Start by softening the butter in the microwave (about 30 sec).
Add the brown sugar and butter to a mixing bowl. Make sure that the brown sugar is packed as this will change the amount of sugar in the cookies.
Beat until mixed.
Add in both eggs and the molasses. Mix until homogeneous.
Step 4: Mix Dry Ingredients
In a different bowl add in the flour, salt, baking soda, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, ground ginger, and black pepper.
If you want the full experience add the remaining half of the chopped ginger (the 0.5cm cubes).
Step 5: Mix Wet and Dry
Combine the dry mix with the wet mix.
Starting with a spoon or spatula, mix the wet and dry ingredients. This stops the flour from getting absolutely everywhere.
Once the majority of the powdered ingredients are stuck, use the beaters to fully mix everything.
We split the dough into two containers at this point with only one getting the full experience (candied ginger) as apparently otherwise there was "too much" ginger. I don't know if it's genetic or if I just grew up with these, but I really don't think there's such a thing :)
Step 6: Portion and Bake
Now you have to decide how big you want your cookies to be: big, flat, and crispy; or smaller, thicker, and soft centered.
If you go the large crunchy route, you want about 5cm diameter spheres that you press flat before dipping it into the sugar. If you want smaller, soft centered cookies you want about a 3cm diameter sphere. Don't press these ones flat, leave them as balls.
Or you can do a combination of the two, just make sure they are on different sheets as the cooking times are different.
Once you have decided, portion out the correct amount of dough and roll it. Press it flat for the bigger cookies, and dip the tops of the cookies in the sugar and candied ginger mixture from earlier. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet.
(Watch out, they spread out a large amount! Much more than other cookies.)
Next, place them in the oven:
- For crispy, crunchy, snap in half cookies bake for 15 min.
- For crispy edges, but a soft melt in your mouth center, bake for 12min.
Step 7: Serve and Enjoy
Once they have cooked, give them five minutes to cool down and then have a taste.
I hope you like them, and had fun making them!
Thanks for reading - Lucas