There are the kinds of traditions that you cherish for your whole life. The ones that you remember growing up with - and proudly carry on yourself. And then there are those traditions that you wish you had experienced. Among my "I will start that with my kid's list" is Elf on the shelf, and these gingerbread cookies. I was given this recipe from a good friend a few years ago - and have been making them every year since. Because, friends, they are that good.
I know, I know. "Gingerbread cookies are flavorless and too hard" you say. "They are for building houses, not eating" you say. Lies. This recipe is too good to use for construction purposes - save the store bought cardboard variety for that.
1 1/2 cups dark molasses
1 cup packed brown sugar
2/3 cup cold water
1/3 cup shortening
7 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground allspice
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1. Mix molasses, brown sugar, water and shortening.
2. Mix in remaining ingredients.
I highly recommend mixing the last two cups of flour by hand...
3. Cover and refrigerate for at least two hours
4. Pull out dough and allow to warm a bit, heat oven to 350°
5. Roll dough 1/4 inch thick on a floured board.
6. Cut with lightly floured cookie cutters.
7. Place about 2 inches apart on a lightly greased cookie sheet.
8. Bake until no indentation remains when touched. (10-12 minutes)