This morning Kish sent me a link to the New York Times “Christmas Cookie Plate” — their listing of Christmas cookie recipes from the Times Cooking section. It’s the kind of thoughtful gesture that makes her the best wife ever.
The Christmas Cookie Plate offers an impressive array of cookie recipes, but one in particular caught my eye. I’m a sucker for spice cookies and have been making Dutch Spice cookies ever since I started doing holiday baking years ago. The recipe below for Grammy’s Spice cookies, though, includes a lot of spice — plus heavy cream and Irish whiskey in the icing. I’m guessing that Grammy’s house was pretty festive.
Grammy’s Spice Cookies
Ingredients: 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened (some of which is used for cookies, and some for icing); 1 cup sugar; 1/4 cup molasses; 1 large egg; 2 cups all-purpose flour; 2 teaspoons baking soda; 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon; 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger; 3/4 teaspoon ground cloves; 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt; 3 3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar; 1 teaspoon vanilla extract; 3 tablespoons heavy cream or milk (add more as needed); 1 to 2 tablespoons Irish whiskey (optional)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line several baking sheets with parchment paper or nonstick liners. Using an electric mixer, beat 12 tablespoons butter with the sugar, molasses and egg until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Slowly beat in flour, baking soda, spices and salt. Shape dough into walnut-size balls and place 2 inches apart on baking sheets. Bake until firm, about 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool on wire racks.
To make the icing, slowy beat remaining butter (4 tablespoons) butter with confectioners’ sugar until smooth. Beat in vanilla and enough cream or milk, and whiskey if using, to make a spreadable frosting. Use on fully cooled cookies.