Tuesday, December 1, 2009
Gingersnaps a la Chez Panisse
Over Thanksgiving break, I stumbled upon a book called Alice Waters and Chez Panisse: The Romantic, Impractical, Often Eccentric, Ultimately Brilliant Making of A Food Revolution, by Thomas McNamee. In my ever-thirsty quest for food literature, I instantly became obsessed with the ideology of Alice Waters, the woman who literally began the now nation-wide obsession with using organic, local ingredients. The book tells the story of her restaurant Chez Panisse, which still stands in Berkley, California.
After coming across Alice Waters' recipe for Gingersnaps in her cookbook, The Art of Simple Food, I knew that I had to try it out.
Consequently, these cookies are not vegan. But they are truly outstanding- a classic. This is the gingersnap recipe that will go down in history. And what better way to celebrate the start of the holiday season than with a spicy, molasses-y cookie?
From The Art of Simple Food
2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
11 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup light molasses
1 large egg
Sugar crystals for coating the cookies (optional)
Stir together the dry ingredients. Beat butter until soft and fluffy. Add sugar and continue to beat until combined.
Stir in vanilla, molasses and egg. Mix in the dry ingredients until the dough is smooth.
Divide the dough into two equal portions and roll each one into a log about 2 inches around.
Wrap each in plastic wrap and freeze the logs until firm.
To bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Slice cookie dough into 1/4 inch rounds. Press one side firmly into sugar until coated completely.
Place sugar-side up on the baking sheet. Bake 10-14 minutes until deep-golden brown.
Let cool 2 minutes before moving them to a cooling rack.
I think these go great when dipped in milk or with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.