The Christmas season is, among many other things, a merry time of making. In this house, we could fill our days with endless moments of making all the things for all the people – winter decorations, tree adornments, holiday cards, handmade and love-filled Christmas gifts of many sorts, sometimes the little lady even paints one-of-a-kind wrapping paper, and let’s not forget the baked goods!
November’s plethora of loosened nature bits opens crafting minds to a host of possibilities. The garlands of rose hips, seed heads, tree bark, pinecones and leaves make for lovely winter decorations.
My little R has recently taken to sewing with an enthusiasm so characteristic of her, but so uncommon in this world that I am still taken aback. When paired with her sharp skill of observation to detail, these handmade gifts of hers are really useful! So far, a wrist pad for papa’s keyboard as a day of working on the computer and only having wood under his wrists must be uncomfortable! And her baby gets a cushion for the Moses basket.
Many a batch of molasses ginger cookie will pass through this kitchen during the holidays. Nothing else comes close to tasting just like Christmas time. The good old standard recipe from I-don’t-know-where is the best, but a few grain-free and sugar-free experiments are in the works.
Ah, and the winter knitting. My mind can’t stop wandering to all the baby wools that I want to whip up, but a little discipline has me weaving ends in on a birthday / Christmas tunic for the almost 6 year old, and blocking a special-request hat for a lovely lady in no time.
We have only just begun! There is plenty more making and crafting to be had. I do always find myself in a bit of a bind with one gift or another as the gift-giving deadline draws near. These few weeks before Christmas just do seem to pass at an unusually rapid pace!
What are you making these days? I’d love to hear about your projects, or post a link!
Ginger Molasses Cookies
- 4 T butter, room temp
- 1/2 c. brown sugar
- 2 egg whites
- 1/3 c. molasses
- 1 t. vinegar
- 3/4 c. whole wheat flour
- 1 c. all purpose flour
- 3/4 t. baking soda
- 1 1/2 t. ginger (dry spice form)
- 3/4 t. cinnamon
- 1/8 t. cloves
- Sugar in the raw for pretty sprinkles
- Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter your cookie sheet.
- Cream butter and sugar. Stir in egg whites, molasses and vinegar.
- In a separate bowl, sift together all of the dry ingredients: both flours, baking soda and all of the spices.
- Slowly combine the dry and wet ingredients. The dough should be quite thick.
- Next, shape the dough into round balls. We do roughly one tablespoon per ball, just scooping with a soup spoon. While it can be a sticky mess, I find they do turn out much better than if you were just to scoop dough right onto the cookie sheet. Some tips to keep back the sticky mess: If you have time to spare, cover and refrigerate the dough for an hour or more before rolling your balls. This is not necessary, just helpful. Also, try keeping your hands a little wet, periodically rinsing off any dough that builds up. This will reduce the tendency of the dough to stick to your hand.
- We like the sparkle that sprinkling the dough balls with sugar in the raw gives, but giving a sprinkle of normal sugar works, too. These cookies are much softer and chewier when you do NOT press down or flatten the balls. Put the sheet in the oven as is.
- Bake for 12 minutes. They will be very soft when you check on them; they might seem as if they are not done, but they will set up as they cool and be very soft and chewy. This is one cookie that taste much better when cooled down rather than right out of the oven. Enjoy!