Saturday, January 5, 2013

Best Gingersnap Cookies, Ever!

A few days before Christmas I had the very good fortune of
exchanging cookies with my friend David. I sent him this...
And, David sent me this!
Not only did David spoil me with a sampling of waxed twine
from his collection of Martha by Mail items, he also sent me...
His cookies! Despite how I've always disliked gingersnap cookies, the
aroma that wafted over me as I lifted the lid of David's beautiful tin
had me ripping packages faster than you could say, It's a Good Thing!
Army dad and I devoured David's gingersnaps in one day... All of them! We
enjoyed the first package with tea in the morning and took another package
with us that afternoon while running errands. By evening, we were craving
more so we ended up taking the third, and sadly last package to the movies
with us. Forget the popcorn... Pass the gingersnaps, please! Ever since the
disappearance of David's gingersnaps we've been longing for more. So today,
after I pressed all of my table linens and put back everything we removed to
decorate for Christmas. I ordered everything I needed to make David's cookies!
It's always winter in January when I bring
You know how they say you never regret the things you buy, only the things
you don't buy? Well, this is one of those pieces that would have haunted me
forever had I passed it up. It stays out until it's time to put up my Easter tree!
So let's bake! Yes... That's a new mixer you see! But more on
that in a minute. First, I want to let you in on a little secret...
It's my favorite item at Sur la Table right now! Of course, it's perfect for
working with pastry; however, if you're a food blogger that's always wanted
a chunk of carrara marble to use as a surface prop, this is the one for you!
Even at regular price it's under $40 but
right now, it's an even better buy on sale!
It's a change-up from my usual butcher block and because it's not
my real marble island, I'm not as worried about damaging it. If I do
ruin it, I know it can be easily replaced. It's a win! And, you need one!
So what about those gingersnap cookies? Right!
Here we go... Starting with the best sugar of course!
And, everything else you need to successfully recreate David's recipe!
By the way... Don't buy the crystallized ginger in the spice aisle. On my order to the
market I stated only, Crystallized Ginger, which resulted in a call from the market
asking if I really wanted three bottles of the Spice Islands variety they carry at
$35.07 per bottle. Say no to that and, grab this from the produce aisle instead!
At only $4.00 for a 3oz package, it's a much less costly option,
plus if you don't use all of it for baking you can snack on it too!
For David's gingersnap cookies, you just chop up your ginger like this...
Also, do ensure you pick up the correct molasses. You want unsulphured
Back to that new mixer! I've been dying for a large-capacity mixer
because I bake a lot of sugar cookies. And, since I roll my cookies
fairly thick, one batch usually yields less than 10 cookies. Therefore, to
save time I must mix 3-4 batches of cookie dough at once... However,
just doubling the recipe strains the motors on my KitchenAid mixers...
And, as a result of my attempts to power through the lack of power I
had, but that my baking requires, I've lost quite a few attachments too!
So when Cuisinart offered to let me test their 7-quart stand mixer 
I was t-h-r-i-l-l-e-d! Not only does it have the capacity I need, it has the
power I need to mix multiple batches of dough. And, it has a timer too!
I was able to sell the beast and, because of Cuisinart's new 7-quart
stand mixer for home chefs and bakers, I am happy to say that for
my larger cookie projects, I am no longer mixing in the garage!
The splash shield is fantastic... No more flour-poof! And, no matter what
speed the mixer is set to, when you press start, the mixer knows to begin
slow. There's also a fold setting, which eliminates breaking meringues!
For home bakers that need lots of mixing power and who need a mixer
is the perfect compromise between home mixers that can't keep up and cost
prohibitive commercial stand mixers that separate us from our kitchens!
Time to bake gingersnaps with my friend, David!
As an Army brat darling, I always associate gingersnaps with those
horrible box cookies they passed out at base nurseries my parents
used to drop us at while they attended military social functions...
Those cookies were horrible! Promised as a treat, they were miserable
consolation for being left behind by your parents for the evening! They
were tough to chew and had a bitter taste that lingered well after mom
and dad picked me up. In fairness to Nabisco, they might have improved
gingersnaps since 1974 but I wouldn't know because those early traumas
swore me off gingersnap cookies forever. Forever until David, that is!
 David's gingersnaps are soft, a little chewy and the spice... Oh, my goodness! The
spice flavor is mild, warm and wraps around your taste buds like a big hug from
a friend you've missed for a long time... Pure ginger-heaven! In fact, I might
have to suggest David change the name. Ginger-heaven has a sweet ring to it!
David gives two options for finishing his gingersnap cookies... You
can roll them in sugar then flatten them on the cookie sheet, or
to achieve the sugary dusting look of the cookies David sent me...
Flatten them on the cookie sheet and sprinkle with lots of sugar
before you pop them into the oven. I panicked a little about baking
my Silpat mats covered in sugar so I flattened and sugared before
placing my cookies onto my Silpats. But after trying it both ways
and seeing no damage to my Silpats whatsoever, I say save yourself
time and trust David. Flatten and sugar right on the baking sheet!
As long as you use Silpats or parchment you
will turn out perfectly baked cookies every time!
Now it's time to settle down with the perfect cup of tea to match
David's perfect gingersnap cookies and, watch Downton Abbey!
Thank you, David... You've given me gingersnap cookies worthy of
giving gingersnaps another try. And, you've taught me how to make
my own. Which lets you off the hook for having to send me more!

5 comments:

  1. Hehe, your gingersnap trauma part had me giggling. :)

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  2. Excellent!!!! They look so delicious that I want to have one now. I suppose I'll have to get back into the kitchen if I want to taste them again. :)


    Thanks for the Cuisinart info on their new 7qt. mixer. I have also been looking into getting one in the near future for the sole purpose of making multiple batches of doughs. I have a 6qt. Kitchenaid along with my two 5qt ones (I will never get rid of these), but because the 6qt is SO SO loud I hardly ever use it. When I found out that KitchenAid was now offering a 7qt. model that is "quieter", I was intrigued. I'm going to think twice about it now and look at the Cuisinart.

    THANK YOU!!!

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  3. Those cookies look divine AND OMG at that mixer!!!! Holy Moly that's amazing!

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    Replies
    1. David's cookies are amazing, Angie, I promise! And, it's been a year and I'm still VERY much loving my Cuisinart Mixer! xo

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Thank you for taking the time to let me know what you think!

xo
Janet