ANNOUNCING: Change is part of life, and apparently, it's part of blogging, too. As of September 5, 2013, I'm merging The Virtual Goody Plate with Disco Mom Takes on the World and whatever else may henceforth spill from my fingertips (and kitchen), into one great new blog. I hope you'll join me there in exclaiming, "THIS IS AWESOMELAND."

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Chocolate-Gingerbread Drops (by Kat)

When a title is followed by "(by ____)" that means the recipe was baked, written up and photographed by that guest baker. Anything from me, Kari, will be in italics at the beginning.

Guest Baker Kat was my idol and best friend in Colorado, where I lived from 1999 to 2005. I liked to think of myself as her sidekick. Much, much baking, eating, shopping and crafting was done together. She runs a very serious kitchen. Kat lives in Longmont, Colorado.

When planning a goody plate, in addition to a variety of tastes, textures and colors, I also like to come up with cookies/tastes that folks have not likely seen before. And taste is still king. These babies are a delight - each bite a surprise. The warmth of ginger, the tang of cherries, and the sweetness of the chocolate (I used semisweet instead of bittersweet) all blend so wonderfully together on the tongue. These are a great twist on a traditional gingersnap, and stay nice and chewy days after baking.

  • The order of mixing things seems a little odd, but totally works so just fight the urge to cream the sugar and shortening together first and follow the recipe.
  • I had no trouble incorporating all of the flour with my mixer - I don't know if the motor on a hand-held electric mixer would have trouble, but my Kitchenaid had no problem with it.
  • The next time I make these - and yes, there will definitely be many "next times" - I'm going to use a little less ginger (for me it was just a tad too strong) and a little more chocolate (for me it was just a tad too sparse) - and yes, I'm sticking to semisweet because that's how I like my chocolate. Milk would be too sweet for these cookies, but I don't think bittersweet would be sweet enough. Mini chocolate chips would be a nice alternative to chopping up baking chocolate, although hitting a big chunk once in awhile is part of the fun!
Chocolate-Gingerbread Drops
1/2 cup shortening
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground allspice
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup molasses
1 egg
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup dried tart red cherries
3 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped

1. Preheat oven to 375°F. In a large mixing bowl, beat shortening on medium to high for 30 seconds. Add brown sugar, baking soda, ginger, allspice and salt. Beat until well combined. Beat in molasses and egg until combined. Beat in as much flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in any remaining flour with a wooden spoon. Stir in cherries and chocolate.

2. Drop dough by rounded teaspoons (a cookie scoop worked great with this dough) onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for about 8 minutes or until bottoms are lightly browned. Cool on wire racks. Makes about 3 dozen cookies

To store: Layer cookies between sheets of waxed paper in an airtight container; cover. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

Recipe from Better Homes and Gardens Christmas Cookies magazine, December 2009

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...