Saturday, December 20, 2014

From the Kitchen - Outside the Nest


One more memory of Christmas when I was a child. When we went to visit Grampa B's during the holidays, he would go into his walk-in closet and bring out the container of Pepper Nuts.
Little, hard, tasty cookies.
I tried making them once. Way to much work to make and bake those tiny little nubbins.
Fast forward to a more recent time when Archway cookies could be found in the supermarket.
They had these larger sized, powdered  sugar coated, soft, tasty, spicy cookies called Pfeffernuesse, which roughly translates to Pepper Nuts. I loved them. Easy on the teeth and jaw. Not so much crunching and chewing.
I have found the recipe. I will share with you. This is one of those recipes that I might just have to make throughout the year.

We'll start with the wet ingredients. I love glass measuring cups and the microwave. It makes life so much simpler. On a side note, I use liquid egg product in place of the actual egg, as I made a half batch.

Now for the good stuff. This is quite the assembly, but every single item is needed. Note the bottle of cardamom seed. That's enough to make cookies for the whole city. But, it needs to be ground.

Here's my secret weapon, a gizmo that I keep handy. It's an electric coffee grinder which I use only for spices that need to be ground, pummeled, pulverized.

Next combine all the dry ingredients.

I like to whisk it all together so that everything is mixed.

Mix the wet and dry together and let it chill.

I use a cookie scoop, because I like my gadgets. It makes fairly round balls of dough which I roll a little bit more by hand before I bake them.

After they're done baking, and they cool a half minute or so, I roll them in powdered sugar and let them cool completely.

Then they go into my favorite cookie tin, where they sit for a day or so to flavor through.

The final product, the best little spiced molasses cookie on the planet. So, easy to make, and
are they ever good. Grab a cup of coffee and enjoy one or two, or well, three. Irresistible.
Happy Saturday and Happy Holidays.


1/4 C molasses
2 Tbsp honey
1/4 C butter
1 egg
3/4 Tsp anise extract
2 C all-purpose flour
6 Tbsp sugar
1/4 C packed brown sugar
1 Tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 Tsp baking soda
1/2 Tsp ground ginger
1/2 Tsp ground cardamom
1/2 Tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 Tsp ground cloves
1/4 Tsp salt
1/2 C confectioner’s sugar

Combine molasses, honey and butter in a microwave safe measuring cup, heat until butter is melted. Stir to combine, let cool to room temperature. Add egg and anise extract, stir to combine. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, sugars, cinnamon, baking soda, ginger, cardamom, nutmeg, cloves and salt. Gradually stir in wet ingredients, and mix well. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours, until dough if chilled and firm. Preheat oven to 325°. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners. Roll dough into 1 inch balls. Place 1 inch apart on baking sheets. Bake 12-14 minutes, until golden brown.  Let cool slightly, and roll in confectioner’s sugar. Cool completely on racks. Store in tightly covered container. Best if cookies are allowed to flavor for several days before eating.

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