Holiday Ginger Snaps

1 cup Crisco (none other will do!)

1/4 cup soft butter

1/3 cup molasses

1-2/3 cups sugar

2 eggs

4 cups flour

3 tsps baking soda

2 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp salt

1 tsp ground cloves

1 tsp ground ginger

Melt shortening and butter and cool for 15 minutes.

Mix shortening mixture with molasses, sugar and eggs.  Stir in all the remaining ingredients – this can be done on an electric mixture to ensure good blending.

Shape dough into 1″ balls and roll in more sugar.  Place 2″ apart on a parchment lined baking sheet.  Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes. Cool.

Melt 18 oz of good quality white chocolate – do NOT use candy melts -yuck!

Dip half of the cookies in the  melted chocolate and place on a wax paper lined baking sheet.  Immediately sprinkle on a few pieces of crystallized ginger and then let the white chocolate set.

NOTE:  These cookies freeze well for 2-3  months.

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Simply the Best Chocolate Chip Cookie

2-1/4 cups flour

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

Mix altogether with a wire whisk and set aside.

In a mixer bowl, cream:

1/2 cup Crisco (no other brand!)

1/2 cup room temperature butter (no margarine!!!!)

Add:

3/4 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup white sugar

2 tsp vanilla

2 eggs

When all well incorporated, add the dry ingredients and mix well.

Add 2 cup dark chocolate bits (I use Guittard) and 1 cup  mini chips.

Scoop onto parchment lined sheets.  Bake at 375 for 10-12 minutes – remove cookies before they look done.  They will continue to bake a bit after you remove them from the oven.

NOTE:  To be even more decadent, after cookies are cooled, melt some more of the dark chocolate bits (with a tsp of Crisco) and then dip the cookies in the chocolate

Indian Pudding

2 cups milk

1/2 cup yellow corn meal

1 large egg

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup dark molasses

1/2 tsp grated fresh ginger

1 cinnamon stick

1 vanilla bean

Pour milk into a saucepan and add the ginger, cinnamon and vanilla.  Bring to a simmer but do not boil.

In a bowl combine the cornmeal and 1 cup water and mix well.  Add the egg and salt and mix well.

Strain the milk, removing the vanilla and any ginger pieces.  Pour milk back into the pan and add the cornmeal

mixture along with the molasses.

Cook over medium heat until thick but do not boil.

Pour into a well buttered 2 quart pan.  Bake at 300 degrees for abut 1 hours until mixture is set

Remove – serve warm with either whipped cream or vanilla ice cream

 

Chocolate Caramel Custard

1/2 cup sugar

1 tbsps water

1 tbsps lemon juice

1 cup milk

2 oz semisweet choc

2 eggs plus 2 egg yolks

In a small saucepan, combine 1/4 cup sugar, water and juice.  Heat over medium while the mixture bubbles,

until it begins to turn a light amber brown.  Immediately divide among 4 ramekins and swirl to coat.

Works fast as this stuff hardens quickly.

In another saucepan, heat the milk and chocolate until the chocolate in melted.  Remove and cool slightly.

In a mixture, beat the eggs, the yolks, the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar until thickened and smooth.  Pour

the chocolate mixture into the eggs – slowly to temper – and mix well.  Skim as much “foam” off the top of

the mixture as you can and then pour the mixture evenly into the cups.  Put into a baking dish and pour

boiling water halfway up the sides of the ramekins.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes until set.

Remove from oven and then remove the ramekins from the water bath and cool slightly.

To unmold, run a knife around the sides and invert onto a plate – may be served warm or cold.