Sunday, December 8, 2013

Soft molasses (and rum) cookies

This holiday season seems to have come out of nowhere. I feel completely unprepared for December and haven't even organized my thoughts around what to bake this season yet. I think that part of the reason is that Thanksgiving was so late and the fact that I spent about a week in Taiwan in November. One of the events that really crept up on me was my friend Leigh's annual cookie exchange.

My family and I returned home for the holidays the day before the cookie exchange. I didn't have much time to think about what to make for this year's event, so I wanted to find something that would be easy, stress-free and something I could make with my pantry ingredients. I was still dealing with some jet lag from my international travels so this truly had to be a cookie that I could bake in my slightly discombobulated state. I didn't want to repeat anything I've baked in previous years either (pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, dark chocolate peppermint patty cookies, candy cane kiss cookies, and oatmeal raisin cinnamon chip cookies).

I found these soft molasses cookies on the King Arthur Flour website, and I was intrigued that they contained some alcohol. I found the rum to be a bit on the stronger side, so you can dial that down or replace it with water if you aren't a fan of dark rum. These cookies did bake up nice and soft as advertised, and the holiday spices and molasses were very prominent. All in all, these were some good cookies and perfect for the swap.

Soft molasses and rum cookies
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature/softened (if using salted butter, omit the 1/2 teaspoon salt above)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup (6 ounces) molasses
  • 1/3 cup dark rum (I used Myer's dark rum)
Directions
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, ground ginger, cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, salt and baking soda. Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl if using a handheld mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Slowly beat in the molasses.

Alternately add in the dry ingredients and the dark rum until the mixture is fully incorporated.

Using a cookie scoop (or two spoons if you don't own a cookie scoop), portion out balls of dough and place it on a greased or lined cookie sheet or baking pan - make sure you allow about 2 inches around each cookie since they will spread slightly. I was able to fit one dozen (12) cookies on each sheet with no problem.

Bake in your preheated oven for about 11-12 minutes. When they are done, they will be cracked on top, and the edges will NOT be browned. Remove from oven and allow to cool for several minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for several days.

Yield: I doubled the recipe, used a medium cookie scoop and got 46 cookies

Source: King Arthur Flour

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