Blog Ginger Cookies

Blog Ginger Cookies

In this month when the evenings become cooler and the air clearer, those of us who love to bake start thinking of warm, spicy desserts. There's apple pie along with its cousins, the crisps and crumbles, cobblers, and dumplings; and there are cakes and breads designed to use the vegetable garden's bounty—carrots, pumpkin, and zucchini. And, of course, gingerbread in all its permutations, as cake, loaf, and cookie.

Fall baking (or baking at any other time of year for that matter) would be a bland proposition without spices. They can make the difference between a so-so dessert and a real treat. If you haven't baked in awhile, go to your pantry, open up your spice jars and take a sniff. If the aroma of the spice doesn't jump out at you, it's time to toss it and buy some more. Go to the bulk department of your natural foods store; you'll pay a lot less and you can buy just the amount you need.

As for which spices to buy, in most kitchens, comforting, aromatic cinnamon is the go-to spice and generally sits front and center on the pantry shelf. Nutmeg, cloves, allspice, and cardamom all have their charms as well. But I think ginger, with its fiery kick, deserves more attention. So here is a ginger cookie recipe undiluted by cinnamon or any other spice. These cookies use ground ginger as well as crystallized ginger, finely minced so that you get a little sweet-hot jolt in every bite. And as if its spicy heat weren't alluring enough, ginger is an age-old folk remedy to settle the stomach and aid digestion, something that will comfort you as you reach for a second or third cookie. Enjoy!

My favorite shapes for Ginger Cookies are the Butterfly cookie cutter, the Horse cookie cutter, and the Acorn cookie cutter.