Gingersnaps most likely have their origin with the Pennsylvania Dutch, and their name probably comes from the word snappen, which means “easy.” The cookies are rolled in sugar before baking, giving them a lovely, crinkly top.
For more baking tips, check out yesterday’s post, How to bake just like your grandmother did. Or even better.
Makes about 40 cookies.
1 1/3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons dark molasses
1 tablespoon warm brewed coffee
6 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger
1. Sift the flour, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl.
2. Combine the molasses and coffee into a small bowl.
3. Cream together the butter, the 1/4 cup granulated sugar, and the brown sugar, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves in a large bowl. Add the molasses mixture and the flour mixture, beating until well blended. Stir in the crystallized ginger. Gather together the dough in a ball, wrap in plastic wrap, and chill for at least 1 hour, until firm.
4. Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Lightly grease two baking sheets.
5. Shape the dough into 1-inch balls. Roll the balls in 2 tablespoons of the granulated sugar. Place them on the prepared baking sheets about 2 inches apart. Press down each cookie with the bottom of a glass dipped in the remaining 1 tablespoon granulated sugar until the cookies are nice and thin.
6. Bake, one sheet at a time, for about 10 minutes. Remove the cookies from the oven before their edges start to brown; they will be soft in the center but will harden when cool. Watch the cookies carefully and do not allow them to scorch.
7. Transfer the cookies to wire racks to cool.