Fill your house with the smell of cloves, ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon and all things Christmassy with these deliciously festive cookies which are from The Barefoot Contessa and which also happen to be super simple to make!
First you're going to need the following ingredients:
2¼ cups/281g/10oz plain flour (all-purpose)
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1½ teaspoons ground cloves
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup/200g/7oz dark brown sugar
¼ cup/60ml vegetable oil
2 extra large eggs, at room temperature
granulated sugar, in which to roll the cookies
Note 1: the original recipe calls for 1 extra large egg but I found that I needed to add another egg in order for the mixture to bind. Two large eggs would work.
Note 2: the original recipe includes 1 ¼ cups (6 ounces) of chopped crystallized ginger which I omitted because I didn't fancy lumps of ginger in my cookies. The cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and ground ginger already give these cookies plenty of crimbo kick!
1. Preheat your oven to 350ºf/180ºc degrees. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Or just the one if you only have the one!
2. Grab yourself a large bowl and sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, ginger, and salt and then just use your hands to combine the mixture.
3. Beat the brown sugar, oil, and molasses on medium speed for 5 minutes in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the egg and beat for 1 minute on low speed. If you need to, scrape the bowl with a rubber spatula and beat for another minute. Keeping your mixer on low, gradually add the dry ingredients to the bowl and mix on medium speed for 2 minutes.
4. Depending on how big you want your cookies to be, scoop some dough into your hand and roll it into a ball. One tablespoon's worth should do the trick. My dough was very sticky so I dabbed my hands in granulated sugar and then rolled the ball of dough. Worked like a charm! Once you've got your dough ball roll it in granulated sugar and pop it onto your cookie sheet. The original recipe states to bake for exactly 13 minutes. I baked mine for exactly 8 minutes! The moral of the story is keep a close eye on them - once you start to smell that heavenly aroma they won't need much longer. If they are baked for the right amount of time the cookies will be cracked on the top and lovely and soft on the inside.
5. Let them cool for a couple of minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.
Now, you could leave them exactly as they are and believe me, they're sublime just as they are OR you could add an extra layer of yumminess by dipping half your cookie in white chocolate. And for a little je ne said quoi why not add some popping candy and edible christmas glitter?