The possibilities are endless for sweet and savory recipes using crystallized ginger—it’s even great paired with cocktails or smoothies. But one of my favorite recipes is a ginger-molasses cookie from Zingerman’s Bakehouse in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The bakery has been making their Ginger Jump-Ups for more than two decades and sells thousands per month.
If you don’t have muscovado sugar on hand, substitute dark brown sugar.
- 1/2 Cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3/4 Cups packed muscovado brown sugar
- 1/3 Cup molasses
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- 2 Cups plus 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 Teaspoon baking soda
- 1 Teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 Teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 Teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 Cup chopped crystallized ginger
- Demerara sugar, for sprinkling tops
Step 1: Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Step 2: In a large mixing bowl with a wooden spoon, cream together 1/2 cup room-temperature unsalted butter, 3/4 cup packed muscovado sugar and 1/3 cup molasses until well-blended. If you are using a stand mixer, use the paddle attachment on medium speed. Add 1 large room-temperature egg and mix until the mixture is light and creamy.
Step 3: In a separate bowl, combine 2 cups plus 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon ground ginger and 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves. Stir with a fork until evenly combined.
Step 4: Add all of the dry ingredients and 1/2 cup chopped crystallized ginger to the creamed butter mixture and mix until completely incorporated. If using an electric mixer, use a low speed.
Step 5: Portion the cookie dough using a 3⁄4-ounce portioner, or shape it by hand into balls, using about 1 1/2 tablespoons of dough for each cookie. Place onto a sheet tray lined with parchment paper, leaving space for the cookies to spread.
Step 6: With the palm of your hand, press each cookie down to a thick disk. Top each cookie generously with demerara sugar. For the best coverage, dip the cookie’s top surface into the sugar to completely cover it. This is easier to do when the cookies are chilled.
Step 7: Bake the cookies for 12 to 14 minutes. Overbaking will make the cookies too firm. You want them to be fairly soft. It is a little difficult to know when they are done, because they are so dark to start with that the color change is not dramatic. Look for firm edges, and avoid a visibly wet center. Also remember that they will continue to bake after you remove them from the oven.