Hot Cocoa Gingerbread Cookies
- 3 1/3 cups all-purpose flour*
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons cinnamon (Vietnamese preferred)
- 2 tablespoons dried ginger
- 1/8 teaspoon cloves
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, soft
- 3/4 cup Dixie Crystals Light Brown Sugar or Dixie Crystals Dark Brown Sugar
- 2/3 cup molasses
- 1 large egg
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Royal Icing
- *Spoon & Sweep method: Use a spoon to fill measuring cup with flour until required amount is obtained. Scooping measuring cup directly into flour bag will firmly pack flour resulting in too much flour required for recipe.
- Thoroughly sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves. Set aside.
- Mix butter until creamy. Add brown sugar followed by molasses. Beat in egg and vanilla extract and mix well.
- Add dry ingredients and mix very briefly until just combined.
- Press dough flat onto a plastic food film lined cookie sheet and place in refrigerator, preferably overnight. If needing to use same day, place in freezer for about 1 hour and transfer to fridge.
- Before rolling dough, chill work surface with ice cubes as this will keep dough from sticking as much. Line a few cookie sheets with parchment paper and set them aside. Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Place parchment paper onto your work surface and lightly dust with flour to keep dough from sticking.
- Roll half of chilled dough 1/4-inch thick. If dough gets too soft, return partially rolled dough to freezer and continue rolling when firm.
- Cut dough using preferred cutter. Cut as close as possible to obtain maximum amount of cut outs. Place on parchment lined cookie sheets. If dough gets too soft to cut, return to freezer briefly.
- Before placing in oven, brush off any flour residue on surface of cookies. Place in oven for about 11-13 minutes. Cookies will “fall” when finished baking and should bounce back when very gently pressed in center when touched with a finger.
- If under baked, cookies will be soft and fluffy. If slightly overbaked, cookies will still soften during day.
- Once cookies have cooled proceed by preparing Royal Icing. Decorate cookies as desired.