Ah, the aroma of ginger and cinnamon, married together with the depth of nutmeg, these gingersnap cookies will bring you right in the mood for holidays as soon as they start baking in the oven!
As dreamy as this sounds, I have to admit, I am not much of a baker. I am not one of those people who look at the ingredients and immediately start dreaming of how a tablespoon of this and a cup of that can bring something divine out. I do not know what would happen if I add a tablespoon more of butter or a 1/4 teaspoon less of baking soda to my cake. Nope, not that person. At my best, I am good at following a basic recipe, first word to word and then slowly giving it my own spin.
Having said that, I love baking and I love playing around with recipes. Mastering the basics and then putting two and two together. That is me! And it’s an especially fun ride when I am doing so with my little munchkins in the kitchen. And before you start rolling your eyes on the cliche of ” Oh what a perfect mom letting the kids go loose in the kitchen and get creative” story, let me tell you, it’s not easy. In fact it is far from that specially when you always have a long list of things to get to, at any point in time. Life of any parent! But then to keep things under my control while the kids (and I) have fun, I follow some tricks.
Useful tips while baking with kids at home:
- First things first, aim to do only one thing at a time. If you try to multi task while working with kids in the kitchen, it can confuse them and fluster you. So pick one recipe and follow that.
- Explain the kitchen rules before you start. If you regularly work the kiddos in the kitchen then you must already have rules on what to do and what not but if this is your first time, setting some ground rules, always help in maintaining the sanity.
- Stand mixers are a godsend when baking with kids. Keeps the mixing bowl in place and mixing, whipping etc. is a breeze.
- Print recipe on paper for the kids who can read and follow instructions. Helps them get an overall idea of what needs to be done AND also slows them down and makes your life easier!
- If working with more than one kid, assign tasks before you start. Do not forget to add cleanup after, into the list of things they will be doing as part of the project.
- For younger kids, measure the ingredients and lay them out for them to just start mixing and baking.
- Kitchen aprons save their clothes from the mess and save you an extra load of laundry. But if you do not have one for all the kids, put one of your old tees over their clothes. Makes for cheap aprons for the little ones.
- Lastly, best mantra for having a fun baking with kids in the kitchen, take it easy! Mess will happen, however hard you try, when working with the kiddos in the kitchen, so just relax, put on some music and play around with your lovelies. Later, you can also have fun cleaning up that mess together. After all that matters is the fun you had, so enjoy!
- 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoon honey
- 2 cups white whole wheat flour
- 2 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon ground
- 1/2 teaspoon cloves ground
- 2 pinches nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar for rolling, optional
- 30-35 chocolate kisses optional
In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and sugar on medium speed, until light and creamy. Add egg, vanilla extract and honey. Continue mixing until fully incorporated, 1-2 minutes.
In a separate bowl combine all the dry ingredients.
With the mixer on low speed, add half of the dry mixture into the wet mixture. Once it all combined, add the remaining dry ingredients into the bowl. Mix until combined.
Take the cookie dough out of the mixing bowl. One tablespoon size a time, roll cookies dough into balls. Roll balls gently in a bowl with 1/4 cup sugar. Line on a baking sheet, lined with parchment paper, 1 inch apart. Wrap a chocolate kisses and press on top on the cookie dough ball. Cover with a cling wrap and pop into the refrigerator for 2 hours or for a day.
When ready to bake, pre-heat the oven at 350 deg. F. Bake the cookies for 11-12 minutes or until the cookie turns golden with little cracks on the surface.
Pull out from the oven. Let it cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet itself and then line on a cooling rack until cooled down completely. Serve with a glass of milk.
Inspired by Living Well Kitchen
If you do not have whole wheat white flour handy, 1 cup all purpose flour mixed with 1 cup wheat flour will work too.
Adjust the amount of spices used in the recipe, based on your liking. You can also play around with the recipe substituting cloves or cinnamon with cayenne, paprika or black pepper.
Store the cookies in a cool, dry place.
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