Ginger Cookies - Ginger Shortbread Cookies
Ginger Shortbread Cookies

These delicate, buttery cookies are nice with a cup of tea or coffee.
Yield: about 36
Ingredients
                                            
2 1/3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup crystallized ginger (about 1 1/2 ounces), coarsely-chopped
1 tablespoon sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Additional powdered sugar (optional)


Method

Combine flour, 3/4 cup powdered sugar, ground ginger and salt in medium bowl. Combine crystallized ginger and 1 tablespoon sugar on work surface; chop finely. Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl until light. Add lemon peel and extracts. Beat in crystallized ginger mixture. Beat dry ingredients into butter mixture in 4 additions.

For decorated cookies using a cookie stamp:
Chill dough for 2 hours*. Then form 1” balls and place them on lightly-buttered baking sheets. Press with cookie stamp using a gentle but firm rocking motion. You may dip stamp in sugar (granulated or powdered) or flour before stamping if this helps prevent the dough sticking to the stamp.

*If dough is too stiff, try forming balls, stamping and then chilling before you bake.

For undecorated cookies:
Transfer dough to floured work surface. Divide dough in half. Roll each half into a 2 x 1 x 6-inch-long rectangular log. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate 2 hours. Preheat oven to 325° F. Lightly butter 2 large baking sheets. Cut each dough log into 1/3-inch-thick cookies. Transfer cookies to prepared baking sheets, spacing 1 inch apart (cookies will be spread slightly during baking).

Bake cookies until edges are pale golden, about 24 minutes. Cool cookies on baking sheets 3 minuts. Using metal spatula, transfer cookies to racks. Sift additional powdered sugar over wram cookies, if desired. Cool completely. (Can be made ahead. Store in airtight container at room temperature up to 1 week.)

Recipe adapted from clipping from Bon Appetit Magazine 3/97