Gingerbread Cookies and Cupcakes

Gingerbread Cookies

Ginger is the flavor of the season, showing up in lattes, candies, and baked goods. Gingerbread cookies abound in holiday baskets, and gingerbread house kits start appearing on shelves. Ginger is a great ingredient in foods because it's healthy; it has anti-inflammatory and anti-nausea properties. It can also help settle any gastrointestinal discomfort from rich holiday foods, so it's wonderful to have around for the season.

Using ground ginger root, you can make a variety of wonderful desserts. Here are two recipes, one for cookies and one for delicious spiced ginger cupcakes. Enjoy the holiday season's bountiful flavor!

Perfect Gingerbread Cookies

This recipe creates cookies that can be easily molded with cookie cutters if you want to make little gingerbread men.

  • Combine three cups of white flour with 3/4 teaspoon baking soda, 1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder, half a teaspoon of salt, half a teaspoon of garlic cloves, one tablespoon of ground ginger root, and two teaspoons of cinnamon.
  • In a separate bowl, combine one egg, six tablespoons of butter, and 3/4 cup of brown sugar. Blend well until the mixture is more towards a liquid.
  • Add half a cup of molasses, two teaspoons of vanilla, and a little lemon zest into the sugar and egg mixture. Continue blending- you can use a hand mixer or a KitchenAid, whichever you have at home.
  • Begin to stir the dry ingredients into the sugar and egg mixture, blending thoroughly.
  • Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 2-4 hours. You can refrigerate it, but let it warm up for an hour or so after refrigerating.
  • Spread some flour on a cutting board and roll the dough out. You can make round drops for circle cookies, or use cookie cutters for fantastic shapes.
  • Bake on a cookie sheet lined with parchment for 7-10 minutes each at 375 F.
  • Once they're done, you can decorate them with icing or dust a little powdered sugar on top.

Gingerbread Cupcakes

This is a recipe from scratch, but if you're ever rushed for time, you can always add ground ginger root to a regular cupcake mix from the box.

  • Mix half a cup of brown sugar, one egg, and half a cup of unsalted butter together. You can use a hand mixer or KitchenAid for this one.
  • Add half a cup of molasses, half a cup of milk, and a teaspoon of vanilla to the mix. It'll be a little clumpy, but don't worry- it'll even out soon.
  • In a separate bowl, mix together one and a half cups of white flour, half a teaspoon of baking powder, half a teaspoon of baking soda, half a teaspoon of salt, a teaspoon of cinnamon, a teaspoon of ginger, and half a teaspoon of nutmeg.
  • Run the mixer on low speed and gradually combine the ingredients together until they're properly combined.
  • Fill the cupcake liners about 2/3 of the way full. At 350 F, bake for 19-21 minutes. A toothpick should come out soft when they're done.

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