Saturday, April 12, 2014

Soft chewy caramel gingersnaps

It's a Friday night and what do I do? Get a friend to come over and BAKE ALL THE COOKIES! We couldn't decide between two recipes that I wanted to try, so like any normal baker would do, we made them both.

I'm always on the lookout for cookie recipes that give you nice soft, chewy cookies because I prefer them over thin and brittle ones. Lucky for me, my favorite baking blog is also a fan of soft cookies and she has tons of tried and true recipes. Generally, melted butter, brown sugar, and chilling the dough seems to give you softer and chewier cookies, but there are a lot of variations that can be done.

Today's first cookie is the caramel gingersnap!

I love gingersnaps - or pretty much anything with that spice combination of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, etc. However, gingersnaps, true to their name, tend to be more brittle and thin. Which isn't bad, but why not have the best of both worlds and make them soft too?

The brown sugar in this recipe (along with the chilling) gives this cookie its nice texture - they come out puffy and soft, like your very own cookie marshmallow. It's also rolled in sugar before baking to give it an extra boost - we had leftover cinnamon sugar from our other cookie recipe (that I'll post about tomorrow), so we just used that instead. No harm in extra cinnamon in our gingersnaps!

Better yet, it's topped off with caramel sauce, which pairs wonderfully with the molasses/ginger flavors. The original recipe called for a homemade caramel sauce, but I had a bottle of store-bought caramel sauce sitting around that needed to be used, so that went on the cookies instead. It turned out well, except for the caramel sauce wouldn't solidify or harden. The first few cookies had the sauce just slide right off the tops. To fix that, I pressed the back of a spoon into the cookies to make an indentation on the top and filled it with the caramel sauce.

This solved the caramel sauce problem, but it also meant I couldn't stack the cookies or tilt them, else face a caramel sticky mess. Next time, I'll make the homemade sauce but for now, I'm really happy at how these turned out. Armed with a few dozen cookies, I'm definitely ready for all the weekend events now!

Soft and chewy caramel gingersnaps (makes ~28 cookies)
Adapted from Sally's Baking Addiction
  • 3/4 cup/170g butter (unsalted, softened)
  • 3/4 cup/150g dark brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup/104g dark molasses
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 cups/375g all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup/50g white sugar + 1 tsp cinnamon (for rolling)
  • Caramel sauce for topping (I used Torani's)

  1. Cream butter on high speed in a stand mixer until light and fluffy. Mix in the brown sugar and combine until smooth. 
  2. Add the molasses, egg, and vanilla and continue mixing on medium speed. The mixture will appear grainy. 
  3. Sift together flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and salt in a separate bowl. 
  4. Slowly add dry mixture to the wet on low speed until just combined. 
  5. Chill covered dough for 1-2 hours. 
  6. Preheat oven to 350F. 
  7. Make 1 1/2 balls (I used my medium cookie scoop) and roll them in the sugar/cinnamon mixture. Place balls on a prepared cookie sheet and bake for 8-9 minutes. Pull the cookies out and press the tops down to flatten the surface. Put back into oven for 1 more minute. 
  8. Let cool on the cookie sheet for 10 minutes. Using a spoon, make indents on the top for the caramel sauce. 
  9. Once cool, transfer to a flat surface and fill the indents with caramel sauce. Enjoy! :)

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