Saturday, November 15, 2008

Cozy Time

My daughter and I are snuggled up on the couch reading our books while eating ginger cookies and drinking tea. It’s raining and raining and raining. The horses are tucked in their stalls. The dear old dog is asleep at my feet. Aaaah!

I thought I’d share this recipe for Shaker Spice Cookies with you. It is very special to me, and even people who don’t like cookies fall in love with these. During my childhood, growing up in the Midwest, these cookies were part of fall and winter. After raking leaves or going ice skating, I remember always finding a plate of warm ginger cookies next to my cup of hot chocolate. When I grew up and moved to New York City, I asked my mom for the recipe. She told me that she had lost it!

For over fifteen years, I tried every ginger cookie recipe I could find but none of them hit the mark. Finally, one holiday season when I lived in California, in the Los Angeles Times, I found this recipe. Oh comfort and joy - it was the right one. So, as the leaves come down each Autumn, my family and friends begin asking me, and the cookie sheets start filling up. Since I can’t send a batch to each of you, here’s how to bake them. (Don’t over-cook since they’re better when they’re soft.)


Pre heat oven to 350 degrees.

2/3 cup of vegetable oil
1 cup of sugar
1/4 cup of molasses
1 egg
2 cups of flour
2 teaspoons of baking soda
1/2 tsp. of cloves
1/2 tsp. of ginger
1 tsp. of cinnamon
1/4 tsp. of salt

Put the oil, egg, molasses in a mixing bowl and beat until well mixed. Add the sugar.
Then, add cinnamon, cloves, ginger, salt and baking soda.
Mix in the flour 1/2 cup at a time - sometimes, towards the end, I use my fingers to really mix up the dough.

Cover 2 cookie sheets (or better yet, 4 sheets if you have them) with parchment paper so the cookies don’t stick. Roll little balls of the dough and drop 12 on each cookie sheet, spaced apart so they don’t run together when they flatten out.

Bake five minutes with one sheet on each rack of the oven. After five minutes, take out the cookie sheet, flatten each cookie with a fork and sprinkle a little sugar on it. Switch the cookie sheet to the other rack - so it browns on both the bottom and the top. Don’t let the cookies over bake or they won’t be chewy - about 3 to 5 more minutes.

Yields 48 cookies. Store them in an airtight container - if they get hard, you can wrap them in a paper towel and microwave them for 10 seconds to make them soft and chewy again.


Cassi said...

sounds great - except for the cloves... have horrible memories of biting into one of those once!!! {{shudder}}

Lori Skoog said...

Virginia...can I come over? My day is very similar to yours....raining, tea, fire in the kitchen....BUT no cookies. They sound (and look) great. How are the horses doing?

billie said...

Thank you for the recipe! We've had more sunshine than anyone expected today, but now the second band of storms is blowing in. Several people were killed last night not too far from us due to extremely severe tornadoes, and they're saying we could have more tonight. I have a feeling your ginger cookies will be just the ticket once we get horses in and settle down for the night.

LJB said...

Next time I come for a visit, I want cookies! You didn't know I was a cookie monster, did you! LOL

I spent the afternoon -- cookieless -- cleaning at our new place in preparation for painting. Pretty exciting times, even if I was cookie deprived.

Grey Horse Matters said...

Mmmm, they look great. Be right over! Seriously, I'll have to try them for the holidays. Hope the girls are all doing well today.

Breathe said...

Mmmm. I am making these tomorrow. But first I have to buy molasses. and maybe ginger. and I'm not sure if I have ...

Okay maybe next week. :)

But I AM printing it out! Thanks!

Pony Girl said...

Those sound really good! My mom and I want to make a variety of cookies for the holidays at Thanksgiving, maybe we'll try those. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

allhorsestuff said...

It's the Molasses! It makes everything great!
Oh how lovely your day sounded!
Very cozy indeedy, thans for sharing..making those tomorrow!
I like the idea of a seasonal taste.

Callie said...

Oh Yum! I've got to try these!

Janet Roper said...

Oh, those cookies look & sound scrumdillicious! Thanks for the recipe, now I just need to find someone to bake 'em for me! ;-)

Anonymous said...

After reading of Siete's problems, i have been concerned for her. It was nice to see the plate of cookies on today's blog. They look so good. You'd better believe that I am going to bake some..and i will think of Siete's recovery as we eat the cookies.

Esther Garvi said...

Can I come over too? I'll bring all the girls with me - Dennis Mugu will have to stay behind and guard the house of course. Tea with ginger cookies and good company sounds unbeatable!

Bill Evertson said...

Now that Karen and I are finally ahead of the fall clean up maybe this weekend we can try this recipe. Reminds me of something my grandmother used to make but I never found the recipe in any of the books, cards etc she left behind. Our thoughts and prayers are with Siete.

Heather said...

I just made some Oat-Bran Muffins last night and have all of the ingredients ready to make these cookies! I will make them this afternoon. The Oat-Bran Muffin recipe is on my blog and is a HUGE hit with horses. Very healthy also!