I’ve been at my parents’ house for several days now, and my primary accomplishment in that time (other than the minimal number of showers and the maximal hours of sleeping I have accomplished) has been holiday cooking.
On Wednesday night I made minestrone soup and latkes for a family Chanukah dinner. On Christmas, in addition to my traditional ownership of the mashed potatoes, I made some tasty garlic brussel sprouts and these rosemary cookies, which were a smashing success. In fact, I still have a second log of dough ready to slice and bake in some exciting time in the near future.
Fresh off of my success, today I jumped on the gingerbread bandwagon, with a bit less success.
First mistake: having looked at a few dozen cookie recipes in the last couple days, I decided to make these crisps on the mistaken assumption that they were gingery. It wasn’t until I was almost done with the flour mixture that I noticed that they were called Cinnamon-sugar crisps and not ginger crisps. Whoops?
I threw a couple dashes each of powdered cloves and ginger into the flour mixture for good measure, only to make my second mistake. More enthusiastic shaking than neccessary resulted in me finding powdered ginger on my shirt and (painfully) up my nose. Ouch!
When the mixture was pulled together I found the final mistake, on the part of the recipe author and not me. The recipe called for rolling out the cookies and cutting them up with a cookie cutter, but I had a sticky substance a bit thicker than cake batter and nowhere near the thickness of dough that would respond to a rolling pin.
I made a small test batch and determined that the consistency was nearer “muffin-top” than “cookie”, and so I made yet another last minute swap. And now I’ve got a dozen chewy, gingery, molasses-y muffins, which is definitely a good outcome in my book.
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
3/4 cup granulated sugar (I used bakers’ sugar)
2/3 cup dark molasses
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
Cream the butter with a blender and add the granulated sugar. Keep blending until it stops being butter-sugar crumbs and becomes a creamy stubstance. Add the egg, the molasses, and the vanilla and almond extracts, blending each ingredient in before adding the next.
2 1/2 cups pastry flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp powdered cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda (reading error on my part; the original called for 1/2 tsp)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp powdered cloves
1 tsp powdered ginger
Sift dry ingredients together. Slowly mix into the wet ingredients.
Heat oven to 350°F. Find some muffin tins and paper liners. Put a scoop of batter in each tin to fill it approximately 3/4 full. Bake for a little over 20 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.
See, even when you mess up a recipe, you can wind up with something tasty!