Whether you’re hosting a holiday get-together, or just trying to get into the spirit with the help of an extra dose of sugar, baking and the holidays go hand-in-hand. But sometimes, seasonal baking can feel a little over-the-top; does everything have to be double-dipped in white chocolate, stuffed with peppermint patties, rolled in crushed candy canes or painstakingly decorated with a detailed icing rendering of the Three Wise Men?
This year, we wanted to take a big step back, and create a modern twist on a holiday classic that’s easy to make, uses just a few pantry ingredients and is a surefire crowd-pleaser, while incorporating seasonal and potentially cancer-fighting ingredients.
Our twist on a traditional gingersnap gives up on the crispy “snap,” in favor of a soft, chewy cookie that’s perfect for anyone suffering from the mouth sores or sensitivity often associated with some types of cancer treatment, with both ground and dried crystallized ginger, and the addition of chopped dried apricots to lend a burst of sweetness. Apricots are also rich in minerals, organic acids and phenolic compounds, which according to the National Institutes of Health, possess antioxidant, anti-carcinogenic and anti-inflammatory properties.
Chewy Apricot Ginger Cookies
Makes about 18 cookies
2 cups all purpose flour
1-1/2 tbsp ground ginger
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp kosher salt
10 tbsp butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup crystallized ginger, finely chopped
1/3 cup molasses
1 cup dried apricots, chopped
Raw organic sugar, for dusting
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, ground ginger, cinnamon, baking soda and salt.
In the bowl of a standing mixer or using a handheld mixer, cream the butter and brown sugar on medium speed, until mixture is pale and fluffy, about four minutes. Add egg and molasses, and continue mixing until combined.
Reduce mixture speed to low, and add dry ingredients to wet ingredients, mixing until thoroughly combined. Stir in crystallized ginger and dried apricots, and stir until pieces are evenly distributed throughout mixture. Chill mixture for one hour, or overnight.
Line two 13x18 inch baking sheets with parchment paper, and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Using a scoop (or your fingers!), scoop the dough into medium-sized balls, about 2 tablespoons each. Roll each ball in the raw sugar, then place on the prepared baking sheet, flattening each ball slightly. Bake until the center of each cookie is set, about 12 minutes. Allow cookies to cool on the pan for five minutes, then transfer to wire racks to allow to cool completely.