Servings: Makes 56 cookies, 2 1/4 inches each
Ingredients 2 cups (9 ounces) all-purpose flour2 tsp. baking soda2 tsp. ground ginger1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon1/2 tsp. ground allspice1/4 tsp. salt8 Tbsp. (1 stick) unsalted butter , melted and just warm1/4 cup unsulphured mild or full-flavored molasses1/2 cup sugar1/3 cup (2.3 ounces) firmly packed brown sugar or light muscovado sugar2 Tbsp. finely minced or grated fresh ginger root1 large egg3/4 cup (4 ounces) ginger chips or crystallized ginger , cut into 1/4-inch dice 1/2 cup Demerara or turbinado or 1/4 cup granulated sugar for rolling
Equipment: Baking sheets
Position the racks the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°. Line the baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, allspice, and salt and mix thoroughly with a whisk. Set aside.
Combine the warm butter, molasses, both sugars, fresh ginger, and the egg in a large bowl and mix thoroughly. Add the flour mixture and ginger chips and stir until incorporated. The dough will be soft.
Form the dough into 1-inch balls (1/2 ounce of dough for each). Roll balls in the Demerara sugar and place them 2 inches apart on the baking sheets. Bake, rotating the sheets from back to front and top to bottom about halfway through the baking, for 10 to 12 minutes, or until they puff up and crack on the surface and then begin to deflate in the oven. For chewier cookies, remove them from the oven when at least half or more of the cookies have begun to deflate; for crunchier edges with chewy centers, bake a minute or so longer.
Slide the parchment sheets of cookies onto cooling racks or use an offset spatula to transfer the cookies, and cool completely. Stored in an airtight container, gingersnaps keep for several days.
Excerpted from Pure Dessert by Alice Medrich (Artisan Books). Copyright 2007. Leigh Beisch photographer.