From the Biscuit barrel: Fiery Stem Ginger Cookies
The weather in the south of England has been, how shall I put it, very changeable this week! Perhaps we should expect it though, it is Wimbledon fortnight after all right now, so heavy rain, cold and windy conditions shouldn’t be the biggest surprise! I work at the top of a hill in the middle of the beautiful South Downs and on a clear day I can see all the way to the coast, over The Solent and across to the Isle of Wight… but this week I’ve only seen about 1 metre in front of me as the fog and driving rain descended in a scene reminiscent of a wet weekend on Bodmin Moor!
So, this weekend, my choice of biscuit for the biscuit barrel is one to warm the very cockles of your heart…. fiery stem ginger cookies.
What you’ll need:
125g Butter, 350g self-raising flour, half tsp of bicarbonate of soda, 2 tsp of ground ginger, pinch of salt, 200g caster golden caster sugar, 1.5 tablespoon golden syrup, 1 large egg, 5 pieces of stem ginger (preserved in syrup) and 1 tablespoon of the stem ginger syrup.
Preheat your oven to Gas Mark 4, 180 deg C, 350 deg F. Line 4 or 5 baking sheets with greaseproof paper.
Sift all the dried ingredients (flour, ground ginger, bicarb, salt, and sugar) together in a large bowl. Melt, over a low heat, the butter with the golden syrup then take it off the heat to cool slightly. Meanwhile, lightly beat the egg in a measuring jug and chop the stem ginger into uneven smallish chunks. Pop the stem ginger into the beaten egg and add the stem ginger syrup – whisk it all together. Now, make a well in the dried ingredients and pour into it the butter/syrup mix and the egg/ginger mix. Take a wooden spoon and mix well, beating all the ingredients until a dough starts to form. To “finish it off” bring the dough together by kneading the mix together with your hands.
Divide the dough into walnut sized balls – it should make about 20. Pop them onto the baking trays evenly spaced, no more than 6 to a tray. Bake in the centre of the oven for about 12 minutes, turning the baking sheet around once towards the end of that time. Remove from the oven when they are a delicious golden brown and the top of each cookie is slightly cracked. The smell right now in your kitchen should be utterly fabulous mmm…mmm….mmm!
Let them cool on a wire rack until cold. These cookies keep well and are perfect for packed lunches and for tucking in your coat pocket for when the munchies strike on a country walk… and in the photo above I’ve set the table against a backdrop of Bodmin Moor at its most beautiful!