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Molasses Cookies

This is a favorite of mine. The recipe comes from the 1982 St. John’s Lutheran ALCW Cookbook of Donnelly, Minnesota. My poor copy of that cookbook is tattered and the cover is missing because I’ve used it so often. The funny part about this recipe is that it’s called Ginger Balls in the cookbook and I made them for years before it dawned on me that there is no ginger in it. I think it may be a typo, that there really is supposed to be ginger in it, but why mess with perfection? They are so, so good without it.

¾ cup shortening

1 cup sugar

¼ cup molasses

1 egg

2 cups flour

2 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. salt

2 tsp. ground cinnamon

½ tsp. ground cloves

Sugar to roll the dough balls in

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cream shortening and 1 cup sugar together. Stir in molasses and egg. Mix in dry ingredients.

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Form into 1” balls and roll in sugar.

Place dough balls, well-spaced, on greased (or parchment-lined) baking sheet. [My parchment paper was used to make Berlinerkranzer just before making these.]

Place dough balls, well-spaced, on greased (or parchment-lined) baking sheet. [My parchment paper was used to make Berlinerkranzer just before making these, that’s why the sheets look used. I was on a Christmas cookie baking roll.]

Bake 10 minutes. The dough spreads and puffs.

Bake 10 minutes. The dough spreads and puffs.

Then it collapses into flat rounds and the sugar forms a nice crackly crust.

Then it collapses into flat rounds and the sugar forms a nice crackly crust.

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What kind?