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Chewy Molasses Cookies

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Holidays equal platters and tins of festive-looking cookies. Cookies with colored icing, cookies with sprinkles, cookies with fillings, cookies with layers.

An artistic cookie display is a thing of beauty, that I’ll not argue, but I’ll reach past the whole lot if I see a flat, modest, quiet molasses cookie. This is my cookie, not much to look at compared to its flashy holiday brethren, but pliant and spice-scented and, to my mind, kind of perfect.

Because the butter is melted in this recipe, you can just as easily mix them up with a spoon or a rubber spatula as an electric mixer. And also go for dark brown sugar, which contains more . molasses!

Don’t overbake these cookies (unless you want crispy molasses cookies ‚Äî then go right ahead and add another couple of minutes).

They will keep for three or four days in an airtight container. And they are good contenders for shipping; separate layers with wax or parchment paper, place additional crumbled paper in the bottom and top of the container to fill it, and make sure the container is well-padded before putting it in a box and sending it off to a lucky recipient.

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CHEWY MOLASSES COOKIES

Makes 24 cookies

Start to finish: 2 1/2 hours, including 2 hours refrigeration time)

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2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

1/4 cup granulated sugar, plus another 1/2 cup for rolling

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/3 cup molasses

1 large egg

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In a medium-size bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, ginger, baking soda, cloves and salt.

In another large bowl, combine the butter, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, brown sugar and molasses. Beat in the egg. Beat in the dry ingredients; the dough should be fairly stiff. Refrigerate the dough for about 2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 375 F. Scoop the dough up by heaping tablespoons and roll them into balls. Roll the balls in the remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar and place them 2 inches apart on a baking sheet (about 12 cookies per baking sheet). Using the bottom of a glass, flatten the cookies to about 1/4-inch thick, 2 1/2 inches in diameter.

Bake for 7 or 8 minutes just until set. Remove the cookies from the baking sheet and cool on a wire rack. Repeat with the rest of the dough.

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