Old Fashioned Molasses Cookies are soft and moist; they are nostalgic and perfect for sharing, gift-giving, or just relaxing at home with an afternoon tea.
This is my version of an updated old-fashioned cookie. Where I grew up, molasses was a staple. In fact, when I was a kid, molasses was as common as almost any other ingredient. My mom would bake cookies, cakes, and breads with it. We used it as a spread on sliced-bread. (I loved to mix molasses with peanut butter!) It was used in baked beans and glazed ham; and even as a topping for fried bread dough (toutons).
DON’T TRY THIS AT HOME!
Did you know that molasses can be medicinal? A teaspoon of molasses, which as been slightly warmed by hovering the spoon over your stove’s burner, and carefully allowing the warm, sticky syrup to pour into your ear, and then gently stuffed with cotton, will relieve an ear ache. I’m sure there are many fellow Newfoundlander’s who know just what I’m talking about! It was an instant relief for an ear ache.
Molasses is always present in my pantry. I don’t get to use it as much as my mom did, even though I often make traditional Newfoundland recipes. However, it’s been many, many years since I’ve spread it on bread! It was delicious when I was younger, but my tastes have changed over the years.
In this Old Fashioned Molasses Cookie recipe, molasses is combined with other strong smelling and tasting ingredients such as cinnamon, ginger, and cloves to make a comforting, home-style, old-fashioned cookie. So, bake these up, make a cup of tea, and snuggle up on your couch with a good book. The cookies will make the reading so much more enjoyable – I swear!
There are basically three types of molasses – light, dark, and blackstrap. If you boil cane sugar once, you will get light molasses. If you boil it twice, you’ll get dark molasses. So, boiling it three times, must mean that you’ll get blackstrap molasses. Remember, the darker the molasses (blackstrap) the less sweet and more bitter it is.
Never use blackstrap molasses in a recipe unless instructed to do so by the author of the recipe. You can use light or dark without changing the taste drastically. There’s also sulphured and unsulphured molasses. The difference between the two is that the sulphured molasses has been chemically treated with preservatives. Nearly 100% of the time, I use unsulphured light molasses.
EVERYONE LOVES OLD FASHIONED THINGS
As a take-along holiday treat, Old Fashioned Molasses Cookies are a winner. Not only are they easy to make, and use very inexpensive ingredients, there’s also no fussing about with sprinkles or icing of any kind. This, of course, make them very easy to pile high into a box; tie a big ribbon on it and you’ll be the cookie hero at this year’s Christmas parties and functions.
Everyone – at least everyone that I’ve ever met – loves the taste and aroma of molasses cookies. The addition of the cinnamon, ginger, and cloves simply heightens the flavour profile and adds depth and warmth to Christmas cozy and comforting treat.
And, if you’re feeling adventurous and you want you add some flare to these, you can certainly top them with a simple cream cheese icing. Just smear the icing liberally on top and add a little dash of festive candy sprinkles. Get the kids involved with this part – they’ll love it!
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Old-Fashioned Molasses Cookies
- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 3/4 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
- 1/2 cup molasses
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoons milk
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and be sure the rack is set to the middle position.
- Prepare a baking sheet by lining with a silicone pad or parchment paper.
- In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, and molasses with a hand-held mixer.
- Add the egg and mix well on low speed.
- Add the dry ingredients and the milk.
- Once again, on low speed, use your mixer to incorporate all of the ingredients. Don’t over mix, just until the white of the flour disappears.
- Use a small cookie scoop to portion the cookie dough. Drop onto prepared baking sheet. Leave at least a 3 inch space between each for growth.
- Bake for 15 minutes.
- Allow cookies to cool for two minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to continue cooling.
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