Cookbook Recipe

Ginger Snaps

I had been thinking of trying out a different sort of cookie recipe for a while. As I usually do baking every weekend for snacks during the week, the new can get old pretty quickly. While my partner still seemed pretty content with the baked goods deposited in his lunchbox, the usual afghans, chocolate chip cookies and shortbread were getting a bit tiresome in my eyes. As I recently purchased Grandma’s Special Recipes: Baking to go alongside my other Grandma’s Special Recipes cookbook, I thought I should christen the cookbook and bake something out of it.

While flicking through the cookbook I stumbled across the ginger snaps recipe and thought I would try it out. I got organised with my ingredients and was all set to go. Oven on, cookie tray at the ready. This recipe, like most cookie recipes was really straight forward and easy to follow. The mixture, at the dough stage was quite dry, and not very malleable but the end product did not disappoint. The cookies turn out soft, albeit dense in the middle, with a crisp outer shell.

In terms of method, the recipe is easy to follow, although beating the small amount of butter with the small amount of caster sugar was more hassle than it was worth. This was mainly as the sugar dominates making sugary lumps rather than a buttery cream. If I was to do it again, I would beat the egg, half the caster sugar and the butter altogether rather than adding the egg later. This would make this step hassle-free, rather than having crumbly butter-sugar bits flying everywhere. Also definitely double this recipe, it is worth it.

The cookies do come out quite sweet due to the golden syrup. You can replace this with maple syrup if that is all you have (that was all I had). This will give it a slightly sweeter flavour, but I think makes the sweetness a bit lighter than if you use golden syrup. Also, the mixture still responds reasonably well without the lemon juice or syrup. I missed this step in the first batch I made (because sometimes I’m just an idiot) and while definitely a bit drier, they still turned out marvelous. I would suggest adding a bit more butter though to wet things up.

The cookies did turn out well, and were delicious, but I was not in awe of them (and neither was my partner). I would change a few things with the recipe was I to make it again. The dough is very dry, it needs more liquid and rolling the cookies in the remainder of the caster sugar also did not add much. The caster sugar really needs to be replaced with a coarser grade sugar for that step. The ginger is apparent but does not really shine through. For me, a recipe with more butter, more ginger and less syrup would be perfect!

As I cannot see the recipe online, please find outlined below –

Ginger Snaps, Grandma’s Special Recipes: Baking, pp44

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 c flour
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 2 t ginger
  • 1/2 t cinnamon
  • 55 g butter
  • 1 1/5 c caster sugar
  • 1 small egg, beaten
  • 2 T golden syrup
  • 1/2 t lemon juice

Method:

1  Heat the oven to 160 degrees celsius. Line two baking trays with baking paper.

2  Sift the flour, baking soda, and spices into a bowl. Set aside.

3  Beat the butter and half the sugar in a mixing bowl until soft and creamy. Set aside.

4  Stir in the syrup and lemon juice, then stir in the flour mixture to form a soft dough.

5  Roll the dough into 2cm balls and roll in the remaining sugar to coat. Place well apart on the baking trays.

6  Bake for 12 minutes or until firm and golden. Cool on the baking trays for a few minutes, then place cookies on a wire rack to cool completely.

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