Molasses, also known as black treacle, is a rich, thick and sweet liquid that is an excellent substitute for sugar in many dishes and confections. For those of you who like sweet biscuits, or sugar cookies, molasses cookies is an exciting and yet comforting variation to experience and experiment with. It is a wonderful treat, keeps well and a superb item to have with a strong unsweetened tea, or black coffee.
Crisp Molasses Cookies are slightly spiced cookies with added aroma and depth. Ground cinnamon and ginger gives the cookie a warm aftertaste, while ground cloves perfumes the cookie with a slightly fragrant woodiness.
For extra crunch, the cookies are rolled in raw cane sugar, and demerara sugar before being baked. For those of you who are unsure of what these sugars are, they are variations of brown sugar and provide a more balanced and rounded sweetness compared to white sugar.
In most places, it is not difficult to find them in the baking section in supermarkets, or at your nearest baking supply shop. For those of you in Singapore, Phoon Huat is an ideal place to start.
Once you have tasted the simple pleasure of making, and eating molasses cookies, there is no turning back. It is an ideal snack to have at home for friends and family who are visiting, and as a gift. It is also a perfect item to share with colleagues, and for pot lucks. For those of you with children, making molasses cookies is a fun and engaging way to spend a few free hours during the weekend which will be equally enjoyable for you and your kids.
2 cups (250 g) all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground clove
½ tsp salt
1 stick (100 g) unsalted butter – softened at room temperature
¼ cup (48 g) shortening (substitute with unsalted butter if unavailable)
¼ cup (85 ml) molasses (I’m using Brer Rabbit brand)
1 cup (200 g) granulated fine sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg (I’m using 60 g)
Rolling sugar coating:
1/3 cup demerara sugar
1/3 cup raw cane sugar
In a large bowl, combine the first 6 ingredients and whisk evenly.
Add butter and shortening in another large bowl and whisk with a handheld mixer until pale for about 1 minute.
Add in sugar and continue to beat for another minute.
Pour in egg, molasses and vanilla extract and beat until blended.
Add in dry ingredients and mix until just incorporated.
Cover and chill for 1 hour to firm up.
Preheat oven to 345°F/175°C.
Mix 2 types of sugar in a small bowl.
Line baking tray with non-stick baking paper.
Scoop about 1 tbsp of firm dough and shape into a ball.
Drop and roll in the mixed sugar.
Place on baking tray and repeat with the rest. They should be resting about 2 inches apart from each other.
Bake for 12 – 15 mins until golden and cracked on top yet till soft.
Remove from oven and cool for 5 minutes before transferring them on a cooling rack to cool completely.
Once cooled, they will crisp up.
To make ice cream sandwich:
Place a large scoop of ice cream and spread to ¼ from the edge.
Place another cookie on top and press to adhere. Freeze or 2 hours or until ready to serve.