Hosted by Mr. Sauter – Culinary Teacher
Gingerbread, Chocolate Chip, Peanut Butter & Biscotti
- 10 Tablespoons (2/3 cup; 145g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 3/4 cup (150g) packed light or dark brown sugar
- 2/3 cup (200g) unsulphured molasses
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3 and 1/2 cups (437g) all-purpose flour(spoon & leveled)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon ground ginger(yes, 1 full Tablespoon!)
- 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- optional:easy cookie icing or royal icing
- In a large bowl using a hand-held mixer or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter for 1 minute on medium speed until completely smooth and creamy. Add the brown sugar and molasses and beat on medium high speed until combined and creamy-looking. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Next, beat in egg and vanilla on high speed for 2 full minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. The butter may separate; that’s ok.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, allspice, and cloves together until combined. On low speed, slowly mix into the wet ingredients until combined. The cookie dough will be quite thick and slightly sticky. Divide dough in half and place each onto a large piece of plastic wrap. Wrap each up tightly and pat down to create a disc shape. Please see photo and description above in my post. Chill discs for at least 3 hours and up to 3 days. Chilling is mandatory for this cookie dough. I always chill mine overnight.
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line 2-3 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. (Always recommended for cookies.) Set aside.
- Remove 1 disc of chilled cookie dough from the refrigerator. Generously flour a work surface, as well as your hands and the rolling pin. Roll out disc until 1/4-inch thick. Tips for rolling– the dough may crack and be crumbly as you roll. What’s helpful is picking it up and rotating it as you go. Additionally, you can use your fingers to help meld the cracking edges back together. The first few rolls are always the hardest since the dough is so stiff, but re-rolling the scraps is much easier. Cut into shapes. Place shapes 1 inch apart on prepared baking sheets. Re-roll dough scraps until all the dough is shaped. Repeat with remaining disc of dough.
- Bake cookies for about 9-10 minutes. If your cookie cutters are smaller than 4 inches, bake for about 8 minutes. If your cookie cutters are larger than 4 inches, bake for about 11 minutes. My oven has hot spots and yours may too- so be sure to rotate the pan once during bake time. Keep in mind that the longer the cookies bake, the harder and crunchier they’ll be. For soft gingerbread cookies, follow my suggested bake times.
- Allow cookies to cool for 5 minutes on the cookie sheet. Transfer to cooling rack to cool completely. Once completely cool, decorate as desired.
- Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 1 week.
Chef John’s Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ¼ teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup unsalted butter, very soft
- 1 cup white sugar
- ½ cup light brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1 ¼ teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
- Whisk flour, salt, and baking soda together in a bowl. In a separate bowl, cream the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar together until mixture is light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the egg, milk, and vanilla extract. Whisk liquids together in small areas around the bowl, then all together to avoid separation.
- Pour dry ingredients into the wet ingredients; stir until flour is thoroughly mixed in. Stir in the chocolate chips.
- Transfer dough to a resealable plastic bag. Refrigerate until dough is firm, at least 2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Scoop out rounded tablespoons of dough and place on prepared baking sheet, leaving 4 inches of space between cookies (about 8 per sheet). Bake in preheated oven until cookies are golden brown, about 12 minutes. Slide parchment and cookies onto a cooling rack for a few minutes. Remove parchment and finish cooling the cookies on the rack.
If you don’t have kosher salt, use 3/4 teaspoon of fine table salt instead of 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher.
Peanut Butter Blossom Cookies
- 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar (for rolling)
- 36-48 chocolate kisses, unwrapped
- In a large mixing bowl, add brown sugar, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, softened butter and peanut butter. Using a hand mixer (or stand mixer if you have one), beat on MED speed until light and fluffy, about 1-2 minutes.
- Add egg and vanilla and beat until well mixed. Add flour, baking soda, and salt, and beat on LOW until combined and no flour streaks remain. Scrape the bowl if needed.
- Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes or more. Add unwrapped chocolate kisses to a bowl and refrigerate as well, until ready to add to baked cookies.
- When ready to bake, preheat oven to 375 F degrees. Line a baking sheet with a sheet of parchment paper and set aside. Add final 1/2 cup granulated sugar to a small shallow bowl, and set aside.
- Using a small cookie scoop (1.5 tablespoon size is perfect), or your hands, shape dough into balls a little larger than 1 inch in diameter. Gently roll balls in bowl of granulated sugar to coat on all sides.
- Place approximately 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheet and bake 9-10 minutes, until lightly golden brown and tops of cookies have a cracked appearance.
- Press a chocolate kiss into the center of each cookie, then remove to a cooling rack to continue cooling.
- Recipe makes approximately 36-48 cookies.
- Prep time doesn’t include chilling time, as this will vary from individual to individual
Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti
- ¼ cup light olive oil
- ¾ cup white sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
- 2 eggs
- 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- 1 ½ cups pistachio nuts
- Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C).
- In a large bowl, mix together oil and sugar until well blended. Mix in the vanilla and almond extracts, then beat in the eggs. Combine flour, salt, and baking powder; gradually stir into egg mixture. Mix in cranberries and nuts by hand.
- Divide dough in half. Form two logs (12×2 inches) on a cookie sheet that has been lined with parchment paper. Dough may be sticky; wet hands with cool water to handle dough more easily.
- Bake for 35 minutes in the preheated oven, or until logs are light brown. Remove from oven, and set aside to cool for 10 minutes. Reduce oven heat to 275 degrees F (135 degrees C).
- Cut logs on diagonal into 3/4 inch thick slices. Lay on sides on parchment covered cookie sheet. Bake approximately 8 to 10 minutes, or until dry; cool
If you have questions about potential substitutions of ingredients, feel free to ask. Remember, Bashas closes at 3 so when you or someone in your family is getting ingredients, keep that in mind. Please always be safe when you are out in the community.
Notes about Ingredients
- Butter- Many of these have you using softened butter. Pay attention to that and leave your butter out overnight if need be.
- Brown sugar- Brown sugar can be made at home with white granulated sugar and molasses, I highly recommend doing this instead of ever buying brown sugar
- For the Biscotti, it has you use pistachios but if you wanted to use other nuts or leave them out, that’s fine. Dried cranberries can definitely be subbed with other dried fruit too.