Monday, January 26, 2015

TBB - Gingersnaps

This cookie confused people. It confused my husband. He said, "a gingersnap cookie is supposed to "snap", it's supposed to be crunchy. This is not crunchy!" I asked him to put those prejudices and mental inhibitors aside, and taste and enjoy the cookie for what it is :o)

Today I took the cookies to work. It confused them too. After complementing me on how professional and perfectly round they looked (and me saying, it's not like I weighed them or anything.... and then admitting that I did), someone said, "I thought you were allergic to peanuts!" Obviously, the color threw them off. To not confuse them even further, I referred to them as "Ginger Cookies instead of Gingersnaps" (sorry Rose!!!).

At work, everyone (myself included) is participating in a company-assisted fitness program which is somewhat of a competition. I was afraid nobody would bite (pun intended) and I'd be stuck eating all of the cookies by myself (there's only so much room in the freezer). I had no such problem! I got rave reviews. One person even came back for seconds, while another came by to say how good they were, and that he really shouldn't have seconds, since they just gained two pounds when they're supposed to be losing weight.

As for me, I tried to keep an open mind, which allowed me to enjoy the cookies as-is just fine!! :o)

Beautiful deep cracks and an inviting golden brown color!


I made the dough in the evening and baked the cookies the next day, which worked out great! As for the amount of ginger, I didn't weigh it. I figured 3 tsp == 1 tbsp, so I used my measuring spoon.

The dough smelled amazing!

I find logs easier to break dough off of, to make cookies

This is my first batch of dough that went into the oven.

Round balls of cookie dough

When I went to rotate the cookie sheet after 5 minutes, I panicked when I saw the cookies. My balls of dough puffed up in the oven so much, and they were so pale looking, and there were no cracks to be seen, not even hairline ones, that I thought my cookies were going to going to come out looking like unrecognizable off-white "blobs". I rotated the cookie sheet anyway, added 5 more min to the timer, and went back to the book. Nope, it doesn't say to flatten them, not even slightly. Maybe that's a typo or something. So I slightly flattened the second batch, as you can see here below.


Slightly flattened cookie dough

Here are the cookies produced by the first method (rounded balls of dough, no flattening).





The second method (with slight flattening) produced lovely cookies as well, but I did notice something. They baked up a little faster (1 min) and although they cracked on top, the cracks were more superficial and less deep. Here's a side-by-side picture:

Round balls on the left (unflattened), slightly flattened balls on the right
Both tasted great. I could have re-rolled the second batch of cookies, because by the time I took the first cookies out, I could clearly see that they cracked just fine. But I was lazy interested in seeing the results of my experiment.

Crispy exterior, with a soft and chewy interior. Bon Appetit!

Final thoughts/tips:

  • After the initial shock of snap-less gingersnaps, hubby said he liked the cookie. He thought it was a bit too sweet and that it could have used more ginger. Still he gave it an 8.5 out of 10.
  • I liked the cookie too. I had one when they were just cool enough to eat. It was magical. Crispy outside with that soft and chewy inside. I thought the dough smelled very ginger-y, however, the baked cookie itself had a milder ginger aroma. The next day, however, it was like the ginger aroma had come back.
  • Some ideas to try for next time:
    • Grate some fresh ginger with a microplane and incorporate that into the dough.
    • Add finely chopped crystallized ginger to the dough.
    • Forget about ginger all together, and convert this cookie into a Snickerdoodle by rolling the dough balls in cinnamon-sugar. I normally don't like Snickerdoodles (they can be dry and tasteless), but a coworker of mine makes them really well, and the texture of this gingersnap reminded me of her Snickerdoodle.
  • I made only 1 change this time: I subbed Agave Nectar for Lyle's Golden Syrup because it was in the front of my cupboard and therefore more easily accessible :o)
  • Don't forget to check out the other bakers in the bake-along and hear about their Gingersnap adventures.

12 comments:

  1. I think I should have pressed it flat too! Wow..you have fitness program at work too! that is awesome! Your cookies look perfect and glad t hat it was a hit with everyone at work!

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  2. "Ginger cookies" ~brilliant! Both batches turned out lovely. Interesting how a name evokes such a strong preconception for a cookie. I'm doing extra walking these days to help compensate for the goodies. Mostly I give it all away as quickly as possible!

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  3. I had to laugh at the peanut comment - they really do look like peanut butter cookies! Thankfully the flavor makes up for their anemic appearance.

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  4. i was thinking of adding crystallized ginger, too! i think, if finely chopped like you say, they would be a great add-on.

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  5. Agave syrup, what an inspiration, Hanaa! You are ever original. Your cookies are lovely. Like you, I find that the ginger flavor is a little more pronounced the day after baking. I will definitely make these again! Please visit me at www.artfuloven.com

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  6. I had exactly the same experience with the round white blobs! I also flattened the next batch although mine were not so perfectly round and even...

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  7. ב''ה

    Ah, I see you also roll them into logs, like Tony. I just refrigerate the entire bowl and scoop from there. I'm not sure what the dividing and wrapping accomplishes.

    Like the snickerdoodle Idea. I think they would also make good honey cookies.

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  8. Ginger cookies is a much better name for these. Yours look beautiful - great post!

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  9. I love your idea for making these into snickerdoodles...yum!! I might try that soon.

    Interesting about your flattening the balls or not experiment. Either way, they looked great. I definitely recommend adding fresh ginger into the recipe :)

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  10. Love your comparison of both baking methods! My husband seems to like them as well. I caught him sneaking a few after dinner tonight. :) I'm in agreement, Ginger cookies, or Snickerdoodles seems more appropriate.

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  11. Your cookies look perfect - I love the first photo. I enjoyed your work story. It's funny isn't it how even if people are trying to cut back, it is difficult to say no to home baked goods, especially when they know the source is a good baker! (--> referring to you here :)).

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