Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A warm hug.

That's what these cookies feel like...a warm hug. 
I don't know about you, but I'm O-V-E-R summertime!  I'm ready to add a second blanket to my bed and wear scarves.  Due to the cool and rainy weather last weekend, I went ahead and gave myself permission to put up my autumn wreath, and I bought a big burgundy mum from the youth group on Saturday for the front porch.  I even noticed over the weekend that the leaves are actually beginning to change!  For some sad reason, the temperatures climbed to almost 90 degrees yesterday.  It is going to be a warm week.  I'm disappointed, but I know that pretty soon it will be here to stay. 
Last night we were really feeling a need for cookies, and I had a hunk of ginger leftover from some Indian-style sloppy joes we made earlier this week.  What a coincidence!  I like to call these Sparkling Ginger Chocolate Chunk Chewies.  All you need is 2 bowls and one spoon/ mixer to clean up!  I think that the spice flavors could possibly be a little more intense, but I'm working with a sensitive palet around these parts because my husband doesn't really like intense ginger flavor.  Next time I may add some cloves.  I hope you'll make these and let me know if you played around with the spices.

2 cups flour [I used one cup white whole wheat flour and one cup unbleached bread flour]
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp roasted Saigon cinnamon
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 stick unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
1 egg, well beaten
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup organic, unsulphered blackstrap molasses
1/2 tsp fresh grated ginger
4-oz. semi-sweet chocolate, chopped into chunks/shavings
1/2 cup organic turbinado sugar

Preheat the oven to 350.
Melt the butter slowly on the stove.  While that's happening, mix together the flour, baking soda, ground ginger, cinnamon, and salt.  Once the butter is slightly cooled, pour it into a second mixing bowl and add the egg, brown sugar, molasses, and grated ginger.  Combine well, and then add it into the bowl with the dry ingredients.  It will seem like it's too dry or hard to mix, but it will come together.  Just use a little elbow grease!  It is a stiff dough.  Once it's all pretty much combined, add in the chocolate chunks and gently fold them in. 
You can pick the size of your cookie.  The ones in the photo above are a tablespoon's worth of dough.  For the rest of the batch, I scooped out an even tablespoon and then halved it.  Whatever you decide, you'll roll the dough into a ball, toss it in the turbinado sugar, and then place it onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment or a Sil Pat.  For the larger cookies, it took about 18 minutes for them to bake, and the smaller ones took 12 minutes.  I'd recommend keeping an eye on them.  These cookies are very chewy, so there's a fine line between chewiness and not-quite-done. 
Yield: about 4 dozen bite-sized cookies

These cookies will crack across the top, and the turbinado sugar makes a nice little crunch.  Although these cookies contain molasses and brown sugar, they aren't overly sweet.  I think the ingredients can be switched around based on what you have in your pantry.  If you don't have white whole wheat flour, use whole wheat pastry flour, spelt flour, or even all purpose.  I hope you'll try these!  They're wonderful with a steaming mug of Earl Gray or coffee...I've already had them both ways!

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