Crystallized Ginger Molasses Cookies


I’m so excited about these cookies.  I haven’t had them in years and have never made them before… so after some research and a few friends sending me their Mom’s favorite recipe and Aunt Sue’s Fail Proof Tips… I came up with what I think is the perfect Ginger Molasses Cookie. It’s perfect, because I like it. Because it made me exclaim, “Oh. My. Gosh!” when I took my first bite.

What makes them special and gives them that “wow” factor… is using the crystallized ginger (which I found at an Asian market), and grinding fresh cloves and nutmeg (versus using pre-ground spices from a jar). The freshness was unbelievable and I love getting a surprise little bite now and then of the spices.

They’re perfect because they’re perfect for me. It’s a rainy day and I’m under the weather and this is exactly what I needed.

You decide for you.

Ingredients
1 cup dark brown sugar
2.5 oz. vegetable oil (I use Smart Balance)
3.5 oz. molasses
1 large egg
2 tsp freshly ground cinnamon stick (use a plane or zester)
1 tsp freshly ground cloves (use a mortar and pestle or spice grinder)
1 tsp freshly ground nutmeg (use a plane or zester)
1/2 tsp  ginger powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup roughly chopped crystallized ginger
1/2 cup granulated white sugar, for rolling cookies in

Ready To Cook?
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit

In a stand mixer (or use a hand mixer), blend together on medium speed, the sugar, oil, molasses, spices, and salt for about 3 minutes.

*Grinding fresh spices will take these cookie from good to fabulous. It’s worth the extra time – I promise you!

Add in egg and mix on medium speed for another 2 minutes.

Add in baking soda and flour 1/2 a cup at a time. Mix on medium speed until all the flour is incorporated. Add the chopped ginger and mix until blended.

Roll the dough into about 1 inch balls, and drop into sugar. If dough is stiff, flatten each ball on the cookie sheet. I found it flattened fine on its own. Dough will be VERY sticky – so I use prep gloves powdered with flour.

Put into preheated oven for 13 minutes. Cool on the cookie sheet for 3 minutes before removing to rack to cool completely. Makes 16 regular-sized cookies, or 8 jumbo-sized ones.

The Perfect Bite
Of course, the perfect bite is when they’re hot fresh and gooey out of the oven! These cookies should stay soft but if they start to get hard, put a piece of sandwich bread in with the cookies (in a Zip Lock or Tupperware) for about 24 hours. The bread will come out like a crouton and your cookies will be soft again. Magic!

The Perfect Pairing
A glass of cold milk or a cup of steamy coffee is be the perfect thing to sip with these sweet and tangy treats.

The Perfect Health
Ginger has been used as a natural remedy for many ailments for centuries. Now, science is catching up and researchers around the world are finding that ginger works wonders in the treatment of everything from cancer to migraines. Here are ten health benefits of this powerful herb.

The Unagi Burger


This Japanese version of the burger is probably one of my favorites. It’s light and refreshing. You almost forget you’re eating a burger! Biting into a combination of fresh ginger, crisp cucumber and crunchy broccoli sprouts brings you a burst of surprising sweet and tangy goodness.

Ingredients
(makes 4 burgers)
2lbs ground sirloin beef (grass fed)
1/2 cup panko
1 egg
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1/4 cup fresh ginger
1/2 cup green onions sliced
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
2 tsp of sesame oil
3/4 cup broccoli sprouts
*8 pcs of shaved cucumber ribbons (2 per burger)
4 whole wheat baker’s rollWasabi Dressing
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons wasabi paste

Preparation
Mix first 7 ingredients together thoroughly… then add salt & pepper. Form patties and pat together well. Because of the volume of ingredients in these burgers… they will fall apart easily on the grill.

*If you don’t have a mandolin slicer, use your regular vegetable peeler and slice the cucumber lengthwise. Don’t peel the cucumber first, you want the dark green edges still on the strip. See here for more details.

Wasabi Dressing
Mix all ingredients well. Taste it and add a little more wasabi paste if you like it really spicy. This can be made ahead of time and last in the refrigerator for a week or more. I always make extra because it makes a great dip.

Ready To Cook?
When ready to grill burgers, test one of the patties to see if it is holding up on the grill and not falling apart. These are delicate burgers to cook. Be sure to coat grill with non-stick spray. If it’s falling apart too much, try browning it in a skillet first so the outside is a little done. B careful not to brown it too much or it’ll dry out on the grill.

Brush sesame oil on the inside of the split baker’s roll and toast on the upper or outer edges of grill. When rolls are lightly toasted, spread wasabi sauce on top bun and add broccoli sprouts. Place meat on bottom bun and 2 cucumber ribbons on top of meat. Carefully fold together and you have The Unagi Burger!

The Perfect Bite
I think the perfect bite here… is the first bite. When all those fresh ingredients explode in your mouth for the first time. But it’s a burger… every bite will be perfect.

The Perfect Pairing
As a side dish… opt for a bowl of edamame instead of fries or chips. And if you haven’t tried sake before… now might be a good time to try it. Gekkeikan Sake can be served chilled or warm. Serve in small demitasse cups if you don’t have sake cups on hand.

The Perfect Health
Modern scientific research has revealed that ginger possesses numerous therapeutic properties including antioxidant effects, an ability to inhibit the formation of inflammatory compounds, and direct anti-inflammatory effects. Read more here.
The Unagi Burger on FoodistaThe Unagi Burger