If you're looking to add a little WOW to your cookie tray or box - without a lot of effort - these are the cookies for you! Our easy stamped cookies are soft, tender and perfectly spiced. A light glaze brings out the gorgeous stamped pattern, and addition of a little cocoa powder delivers the flavor of a European Christmas fair to your home.
To keep these cookies soft, we recommend underbaking them a little or rolling them a little on the thicker side. If you like crunchier gingerbread, roll thinner and/or bake a little longer.
These cookies are a bit on the spicy side, so if you have picky or sensitive eaters, you may want to halve the spices when you bake them the first time.
Our recipe is slightly adapted from several sources, all paying homage to a recipe from chef Yotam Ottolenghi's great baking book, Sweet. A single recipe yields 12-14, 3-inch cookies. It's fine to double the recipe, and you'll probably want to in order to get more of these delicious treats!
The stamps used for our cookies are NordicWare's "Frozen" aluminum, wood-handled stamps.
- round cookie cutter in size similar to your stamps
- 6 Tablespoons (85g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/3 packed cup plus 2 Tablespoons (103g) dark brown sugar
- 1/3 cup molasses (99g)
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1-3/4 cups plus 2 Tablespoons (237g) all-purpose flour
- 1 Tablespoon (8g) Dutch-processed cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- scant 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon table or sea salt
- 1 cup (135g) sifted confectioner's sugar
- 1 Tablespoon (14g) unsalted butter, melted
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon warm water
Heat oven to 375°F/190°C.
Put your cookie stamps in the freezer to chill.
In your stand mixer fitted with SideSwipe or your flat paddle, cream together the butter, sugar until creamy. You can also use a well-powered hand mixer for this heavy dough.
Add molasses and mix until well incorporated.
Beat in the egg yolk until completely mixed in.
In a small bowl, sift together or whisk the dry ingredients.
Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture, beating on low until the dough comes together. If you have doubled the recipe, you may want to add the dry ingredients in 2-3 additions.
- Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead it until all the floury crumbles are incorporated. Form the dough into a thick disk and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or overnight. You can skip this step, but we found it made it easier to stamp and handle.
Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface again and roll out to about 1/4 inch thickness.
Press the cookie stamps firmly into the dough, rocking around to get a good imprint on all the edges. NOTE: If your cookie stamp sticks, dip it in flour it before making each impression, or put the cookie stamp in the freezer to chill it further. We got the best results by doing both!
Use a round cookie cutter slightly larger or slightly smaller than the stamp itself to cut out the cookies.
Transfer the cookies to a lined baking sheet and bake for 7-9 minutes. You don't want to over bake these cookies, so do a test cookie or two to figure out the best timing for your oven. The cookies will be soft when you remove them from the oven, but will firm up as they cool.
Let the cookies cool for 5 minutes on the pan before carefully transferring to a rack to cool completely.
While the cookies are cooling, whisk the glaze ingredients together until they become a smooth thin glaze. Add more water if the glaze is too thick, it should have the consistency of maple syrup or a thin honey.
Brush the cooled cookies with a thin layer of glaze. It will become slightly more translucent as it dries.
Let the glaze set up fully before serving, stacking or storing.