Thursday, December 23, 2010

Iced-Lemon Ginger Cookies

Iced-lemon ginger cookies collage

Christmas is only two days away.  With it comes a joy in my life; I've accomplished my biggest undertaking of the year, helping my parents move to Oregon.  The plan to move was dreamed up years ago but the time has never been right for my parents.  Until at last they decided that this year was the year to move.  Perhaps because of my mom's years of  unwell leg stemmed from having bad back, or it was my dad's sudden twice hospitalization within a year that motivate them to move closer to their only daughter.  I'm doing my finial duty, a very traditional way of honoring my parents, by agreeing to take care of them, and in return, they'll take care of my family too.

I'm so glad to be back home again after a 3-day driving trip from California to Oregon.  The trip was right on schedule, the weather was nice enough for me to drive though California was deluged with rain storm when we left the old house.  These few weeks will be hectic for all of us here, my parents especially since they have to go through many boxes before they could truly settle down.
Iced-lemon ginger cookies

I think I might not be able to post anything new for a while but before I go I want to share a recipe that I tried for a cookie exchange.  This recipe was from FOODday early in December and it's adapted from Alice Medrich's new book, Chewy Crispy Crunchy Melt-In-Your-Mouth Cookies.  The minute I read the recipe I knew this is a cookie with big and bold flavor given Ms Medrich's reputation, and I wanted to eat this spicy and flavorful cookie.  So I tried, I ate, and I rejoiced because it's what I expected.  I added the lemon icing which was a perfect combination with the ginger.  Perhaps you should try it too, you won't be disappointed!

Merry Christmas to all of you, I hope you have a blessed one with your loved ones.

Iced-Lemon Ginger Cookies

Makes about 50 cookies

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking soda

2 teaspoons ground ginger

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and still warm (1 stick)

1/4 cup dark molasses (mild or robust)

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup packed brown sugar

2 tablespoons peeled and finely minced or grated fresh ginger

1 egg

2/3 cup diced (1/4-inch) crystallized ginger

About 3/4 cup Demerara or turbinado sugar or 1/4 cup granulated sugar, for rolling

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven.  In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, ground ginger, cinnamon, allspice, and salt and mix thoroughly with a whisk.

In a large bowl, combine the warm butter, molasses, granulated sugar, brown sugar, fresh ginger, and egg and mix thoroughly.  Add the flour mixture and crystallized ginger and stir until incorporated.  The dough will be soft.

Form the dough into 1-inch balls.  (Refrigerate unrolled dough between batches.)  Roll the balls in the Demerara or turbinado sugar and place them 2 inches apart on lined or ungreased cookie sheets.  Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the cookies puff up and crack on the surface and then began to deflate in the oven.  Rotate the sheets from top to bottom and from back to front halfway through the baking time to ensure even baking.  For chewier cookies, remove them from the oven when at least half or more of the cookies have begun to deflate; for crunchier edges with chewy centers, bake for a minute or so longer.

For lined pans, set the pans or just the liners on racks to cool; for unlined pans, use a metal spatula to transfer the cookies to racks.  Cool the cookies completely before storing.  May be kept in an airtight container for several days.

Lemon icing

Enough to ice about 50 cookies

2 cups confectioners' sugar

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

About 4 tablespoons lemon juice

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, beat with a wooden spoon until the mixture is smooth.  Drizzle the icing on cool cookies.

1 comment:

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