I embrace all forms of gingerbread and ginger cookies. A thick slab of treacly English gingerbread, which, let’s be honest, is really a cake and not a bread? Yes. The thin, crisp, spicy, molasses-free Swedish pepparkakor? Yes, thanks! The American gingersnap, tender and chewy with cracks along the top? Yes, yes, yes.
I tend to play around with the spice amounts in my gingersnaps—even right now, I’m thinking about trying Chinese five spice next—but this is my template. I was first inspired to try adding ground black pepper to my gingersnaps when I saw Alice Waters’ Chez Panisse Gingersnap recipe, and although I do love the hint of pepper and the way it complements the molasses and ginger, I have yet to be bold enough to try the full half-teaspoonful that her recipe calls for. Maybe soon!
makes 2-3 dozen
3 tablespoons turbinado sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
1/3 cup molasses
2/3 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons soy or almond milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice, cloves, or cardamom
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease or line with parchment paper two baking sheets. Spoon turbinado sugar into a shallow bowl and set aside.
Cream together oil, molasses, sugar, nondairy milk, and vanilla. Sift in flour, baking soda, spices, and salt, and mix until flour mixture is incorporated. Dough will be sticky.
Roll into balls the size of large walnuts, and dip one side of the ball into the sugar, then place sugar-side up two inches apart on baking sheets. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until edges start to brown. Cool cookies on baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.