The night before I turned 25, I got an itch to bake something. I get those baking itches at least once a month. I feel like I just have to make something.
I hadn’t planned on getting a baking itch, so I had to think on my feet. I looked around in my cabinets to see what ingredients were on hand for a fairly simple baked good.
Then I remembered about a recipe for ginger molasses cookies that I saw on the blog Sweetish.co back in December. If you haven’t seen her blog yet, you should definitely check it out. She not only has great original recipes, but she also shares interesting stories along with them. I’m inspired by her Instagram as well.
I happened to have all the ingredients on hand for the Sweetish.co ginger molasses cookies, except for a few things it could still get by without.
Ginger Molasses Sandwich Cookies
Makes about 25-ish small sandwich cookies, all depending on how big you make them.
I asked Robyn, author of Sweetish.co, if I could share her recipe for ginger molasses sandwich cookies on my blog and she kindly agreed.
Note: I made these with 1 ½ teaspoons powdered and left out the grated ginger root because I didn’t have any on hand. I didn’t have ground cloves either, which is fine.
½ cup / 1 stick / 113g organic, unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
½ cup / 110g dark brown sugar (preferably organic)
½ cup / 100g sugar
½ cup / 170g unsulfured blackstrap molasses
1 tablespoon honey
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
1 ½ teaspoons freshly grated ginger root (if using gluten free flour, use omit ½ a teaspoon)
2 ¼ cup / 156g organic all purpose or *bob’s one to one gluten free flour (if using gluten free flour you may need to add a tablespoon or so more flour and dough must be chilled before baking)
1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
½ teaspoon powdered ginger
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
⅛ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon sea salt / kosher salt
to roll the little dough balls:
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ cup / 100g organic sugar
for the filling:
8 ounces / 1 box / 227g cream cheese, at room temperature
½ cup / 60g powdered sugar
½ tablespoon vanilla
With an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add egg and beat until incorporated.
Add all of your wet ingredients (molasses, honey, vanilla, ginger root) to the butter/sugar/egg mixture and mix until combined.
Combine all of your dry ingredients (flour, soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, pepper, salt) in a separate bowl, whisk until combined, then slowly add these dry ingredients to the wet ingredient mixture, slowly mixing and adding until combined.
If you can, this cookie is best with the dough chilled overnight, but if you don’t have the patience for that, don’t fret, the cookies just won’t turn out quite as crackly. *If you’re making these with gluten free flour, chilling the dough is a must, I’m sorry, but trust me, it will be worth it.
Preheat your oven to 350° F / 180° C, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Roll the dough into little 1 or 2 inch balls then roll each ball around in the sugar + cinnamon mixture.
Place dough balls on a cookies sheet at least 1 to 2 inches apart, pressing the top down just a bit with your thumb.
Bake for 7 to 8 minutes, until just done. I think one of the joys of a molasses cookie is their chewy moist texture, which is usually achieved with a perfectly cooked, almost slightly underdone cookie. They should look a tiny bit wet, but still a tiny bit cracked when you take them out of the oven.
To make filling:
Whip cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla in an electric mixture. Beat until fluffy and combined. Can be made at least 2 days ahead.
Spread the filling between two cookies of your choice, trying to match up the most compatible cookies based on size. Place 1 to 2 teaspoons of filling per 2 cookies.
I made these into sandwiches and I’m pretty sure I was eating one when Paul told me that it was my birthday. We stayed up past midnight and I rang in my 25th year with a cookie. Okay, several cookies. :)
The very observant among you may notice that the frosting looks a bit different. That’s because I did a little experiment on the filling, I’m sure the original cream cheese frosting recipe is great and I’ve made that sort of thing before. But I wanted to try something.
I have a container of cinnamon sugar in my pantry that I used for cinnamon toast recently. The cinnamon sugar is some cinnamon and mostly granulated cane sugar. I don’t think I measured out either before putting it in the container.
To make a syrup, I measured out a little less than 1/2 cup of cinnamon sugar and dissolved it in about 1/4 cup warm water. I then replaced the powdered sugar in the recipe with the cinnamon sugar syrup. The filling still came out creamy and delicious, just with a slightly different texture and slight cinnamon taste.
I loved these molasses cookies because they were perfectly chewy and moist. They have great texture and taste making them, as the judges on The Great British Making Show say, a good bake.
Let me know if you try these cookies too. And if you have any late night baking itches, I’d love to hear about what kinds of recipes cure those baking urges.