These are representative of my annual negotiation with a warm weather Australian Christmas. Most days in December are too hot to bake – but without baking, Love Actually, and Buble’s Christmas crooning – what else is there to get me in the mood?
Malls are stressful, the post office tries one’s patience, and every women’s magazine is telling you to avoid canapés, load up on crudités and choose low-fat turkey breast (no skin!) over ham to avoid that holiday bloat!
My response is simple: butter, molasses and brown sugar. I seek solace and holiday cheer in the kitchen and bake like there’s a freaking blizzard outside.
Boldly spiced and chewy, these are my ultimate festive cookies. They taste like Christmas, even if it doesn’t totally feel like Christmas.
And when used to make ice cream sandwiches, well, that’s just the right move. It is beach weather, after all.
For ice cream, we (this was a joint decision between Fabes and I) used a duo of salted caramel and milk chocolate from our favourite gelato shop.
This is where you really make it your own. Don’t be scared to experiment with ice cream flavours – not much will be able to outshine these assertive cookies. They’re unabashedly Christmas-y in the best possible way.
Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies
adapted from Food52
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 3/4 cups unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3/4 cups packed dark brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup unsulfured molasses
- raw sugar for rolling
Combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ground ginger, allspice, salt and cloves in a bowl and mix well.
Beat butter and sugar together in bowl of electric mixer until light and fluffy, 3 minutes.
Add egg and molasses. Mix to combine well. Stir in dry ingredients. Refrigerate batter 1 hour.
Heat oven to 375 F/190 C. Roll dough into 1 1/2″ balls. Roll balls in granulated sugar. Arrange on baking sheets lined with parchment paper and gently flatten. Bake in oven until set and crinkled on top, about 10-12 minutes. Remove and cool.
Ice Cream Sandwiches:
Scoop ice cream onto the flat side of a cookie, keeping the scoop in the middle with a bit of free space around the sides.
Top with another cookie and gently smoosh down until the ice cream has spread out enough to cover the base of the cookie.
Eat immediately or wrap tightly in plastic wrap and store in the freezer.