These are quite lovely and put the snap in the heart of the ginger! These freeze brilliantly too, so you can always have homebaked cookies to offer up anytime during the holidays. The dough can be made and stored in the fridge for a week, so you can even slice 'em and bake them fresh.
Ginger Snaps (from Fine Cooking, the Cookie Issue)
7 1/2 ounces (1 2/3 cups) unbleached all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp table salt
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
1/4 pound (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 large egg
3 Tbsp molasses
In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, ginger, cinnamon, baking soda, table salt, nutmeg and ground pepper.
In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and brown sugar on medium until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg yolk and molasses, and mix until well blended, about 1 minute. Add the flour mixture and mix on low speed until the dough is well blended and forms moist pebbles, about 30 to 60 seconds.
Dump the dough onto a floured surface and gently knead until the dough comes together. Shape into an 8 inch long log, about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Wrap in plastic and chill until firm (about 3 hours OR if it's well wrapped, for up to a week!)
Preheat the oven to 350. Line 2 large cookie sheets with parchment paper.
Unwrap the dough and use a thin, sharp knife to slice the log into 3/16 inch slices. Arrange the slices about 1 inch apart on the cookie sheets. Bake 10 to 12 minutes until the cookies are ever so slightly darker around the edges. Let the cookies cool on the sheet for about 15 minutes and then transfer to a rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container. Serve with a glass of cold milk!! (or a lovely cuppa tea).