Saturday, October 4, 2014

Spicy Dreams

This is a recipe from the Hannah Swensen Mystery Key Lime Pie.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F., rack in the middle position. 
Hannah’s 1st Note: This recipe is from Lindy Frank and I’m glad she finally sent it to me. Her cookies disappear faster than a Popsicle on a hot day. Lindy calls these cookies “Ginger Cookies,” but since we already serve a cookie by that name down at The Cookie Jar, we’ve renamed these “Spicy Dreams.” 
Hannah’s 2nd Note: Lindy says to tell you that she makes these cookies festive by using colored sugar for holidays, i.e., pink for Valentine’s Day, orange for Halloween , green for St. Pat’s Day, etc. 

1 cup soft butter (2 sticks, 8 ounces, ½ pound) 
1 lb, 6 oz white granulated sugar (2 2/ 3 cups) 
3 eggs 
1 cup molasses 
2 Tablespoons vinegar (white will do just fine) 
2 Tablespoons baking soda 
4 teaspoons ground ginger 
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 
1 teaspoon ground cloves 
1 teaspoon ground cardamom 
1 lb, 12 oz all purpose flour (6 cups— not sifted) 
½ cup powdered (confectioner’s) sugar, for rolling *** 

Mix the butter and the sugar together and beat them with a mixer or a spoon until they look nice and fluffy. 
(That’s what the phrase “cream the butter and sugar” means if you see it in another recipe.) 
Add the eggs one at a time, mixing thoroughly after each addition. 
Mix in the molasses and the vinegar. 
(I always spray the inside of my measuring cup with Pam or another nonstick cooking spray before I pour in the molasses. Then it glops right out without sticking to the sides.)

Lindy sifts the flour, baking soda, ginger , cinnamon, cloves, and cardamom together before she mixes them in with the wet ingredients. 
(She also weighs the flour and the sugar the way a true pastry chef would do.) 
That means she’s probably a better baker than I am, because I don’t do any of that. 

I just mix in the baking soda first, and then the spices . 
I stir everything up thoroughly, and then I add the flour in one-cup increments, stirring after each cup is added. 
Use your hands to roll the dough into walnut-sized balls. 
If the dough is too sticky, put it in the refrigerator a half-hour or so— that’ll make it easier to roll. 
Put the powdered sugar in a small bowl and roll the balls in it. 
Place them on a greased cookie sheet (I used Pam), 12 cookie balls to a standard-size sheet. 
Press them down just a bit when you place them on the sheet so they won’t roll off when you carry them to the oven. 
You don’t have to flatten them. 
They’ll spread out all by themselves while they bake. 
Bake the cookies at 350 degrees F., for 10 to 12 minutes. 
(Mine took only 10 minutes.) 
Let the cookies cool for a minute or two on the cookie sheet and then move them to a wire rack to finish cooling. 
Yield: Approximately 10 dozen, depending on cookie size.

Fluke, Joanne (2008-02-01). Key Lime Pie Murder (Hannah Swensen Mysteries) (pp. 227-228). Kensington Publishing Corp. Kindle Edition.

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