Icebox Ginger Snaps

Entertaining season is just around the corner and you never know when someone might pop in for a visit. Make a double batch of these cookies which are stored in log form (either in the fridge for a few weeks or the freezer for longer term storage) and then sliced just before baking and you’ll always be ready to serve a satisfying and seasonal treat short notice.

Almost as easy as something made by Pillsbury but so much better for you.

I have made these a few times (they are the perfect make ahead event/dinner dessert or hostess gift) and have tried a few different toppings such as:

  • coarse sugar
  • slices of candied ginger
  • sliced almonds
  • combinations of the above

I haven’t had anyone say they like a particular topping more than another, and these disappear quickly so make lots! The thinner you slice them, the crisper they will be but try to slice them evenly and watch closely near the end of cooking as they can burn easily. Thaw frozen logs in freezer overnight or on the counter for an hour or two before slicing.

crispy, spicy, and delicious ginger snaps

crispy, spicy, and delicious ginger snaps

Ginger Snaps

Adapted from Williams Sonoma

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. allspice
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup butter) at room
    temperature
  • 2/3 cup sugar, plus about 5 Tbs. sugar for
    dusting tops
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/4 cup molasses
In a bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg and salt. Set aside.

Using an electric mixer, beat together the butter and 2/3 cup sugar on high speed until light and fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes. Beat in the vanilla, egg yolk and molasses, mixing well. Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture in three additions, beating until each addition is fully blended. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Place the chilled dough on a piece of plastic wrap and shape it into a rough log about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Wrap the log in the plastic wrap and roll it back and forth until the surface of the log is smooth and even. Refrigerate the roll for 2 hours (up to several weeks) or freeze for up to 3 months.

Preheat an oven to 375f convection. This will allow you to bake multiple trays at once.

Remove the roll from the refrigerator or freezer and unwrap it. Cut it into slices 1/8 inch thick and place them 1 inch apart on the baking sheets. Sprinkle each of the tops with coarse sugar, candied ginger slices, or sliced almonds.

Bake the cookies on a parchment lined cookie sheet. until golden around the edges but still soft, 8 to 10 minutes for chewy cookies and 10 to 12 minutes for crisp cookies. Using a spatula, immediately transfer the cookies to wire racks to cool. Store in an airtight container (I find a jar is best) at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Makes about 30 cookies.
ginger snap with slivered almonds
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Copycat Keg Style No-Bake Cheesecake

We’ve all heard the saying “you get what you pay for” and “anything worth doing is worth doing the hard way”- but is that really always the case?

With cheesecake, easier (plus a little patience) is definitely better. This is my mother’s recipe for cheesecake and it is so easy your kids can make it with a little supervision. It is No bake and also the best, richest, creamiest cheesecake ever (and tastes just like the Keg’s cheese cake that is $7.00 a piece!). Serve with berries that have been sitting in the fridge with a little white sugar on them; this will make a syrup. Alternatively you can boil mixed berries for 10 min(as pictured above) with a spoonful of lemon juice and 1/2 cup sugar per 4  cups of berries and spoon onto cake when cool. Or you can top with a can of cherry pie filling, lemon pie filling mixed with whipped cream, or pecans and melted chocolate and caramel ( turtle cheesecake).

_________

1 pie plate or square pan with prepared graham cracker crust.

1 container of eagle brand

1 brick of cream cheese

1 tb fresh lemon juice

2 ts. Real vanilla extract ( I like Madagascar )

topping such as cherry pie filling, fresh fruit, or fruit compote (see above)

Cool crust. Blend all ingredients with mixers until lump free and smooth. Pour over crust- cover with Saran. Chill in fridge a least a few hours- best if you can leave it all day in the fridge or overnight.