Baking with Craft Beer Cellar: Weizenbock Ginger Molasses Cookies

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Spring is here, and the Bock beers in my fridge were calling out to be used in a sweet treat! I grew up baking cookies, cakes, pies, and other desserts alongside my mom, and it's still one of my favorite weekend activities. Molasses cookies were one of our go-to recipes, but I added some pizzazz with crystallized ginger, golden raisins, and a Weizenbock-reduction for a spicy, fruity, and chewy cookie. 


INGREDIENTS

  • 1.5 cups beer (or one 12oz bottle). We used a Weizenbock, but you could also use a Doppelbock, or for a little less sweetness, an Amber Ale
  • 2 sticks (16 TB) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 3/4 cups sugar, divided (2 1/4 cups for dough, 1/2 cup for rolling)
  • 1 tsp fine sea salt
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 cup golden raisins, lightly packed
  • 1/2 cup diced crystallized ginger (found in spice section of the baking aisle)

Steps:

1) Bring beer to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally. (Watch closely to make sure it doesn't foam over the sides!) Bring the beer to a low boil and cook, stirring often, for about 15 minutes, until it thickens and reduces to ~3 tablespoons, which is just under a 1/4 of a cup. (Pro-tip: keep a heatproof liquid measuring cup nearby. When it's looking syrupy, pour the liquid in to see how much you have. If you have too much, return to saucepan for a couple more minutes.) Set aside to cool. 

2) In a medium saucepan over low heat, heat the butter, molasses, 2 1/4 cups of sugar, and salt. Stir often until butter is melted and sugar and salt is dissolved, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat. 

3) Stir in the ground ginger, allspice, black pepper, and beer reduction. Let cool for 10 minutes.

4) In large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour and baking soda. Turn the mixer to low and slowly pour in the liquid ingredients.

5) Add the egg. Mix until well blended and a thick batter forms. Stir in the raisins and ginger.

6) Cover the dough and refrigerate for 1 hour. (Pro-tip: have a beer while you wait!)

7) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Put remaining 1/2 cup sugar into a small bowl. Scoop the dough with a tablespoon-size scoop and roll into balls. Roll the dough balls in the sugar to coat, and place 2" apart on the baking sheets.

8) Bake the cookies for 14-15 minutes. They'll get puffy, and when the edges just begin to brown, remove them from the oven. They may still look soft, but don't worry!

9) Let the cookies rest for 5 minutes on the baking sheets, then transfer to a cooling rack.

10) Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for about 10 days. They freeze super well if you want to keep them longer for occasional snacking!

MARY MACKENZIE

As her love for beer grew from a hobby to a profession, Mary has always felt strongly about community-building in craft beer: welcoming people from all backgrounds to the fold, helping everyone find a craft beer they love, and educating all types from craft beer novices to nerds (but she has a particular love for the novices).


In addition to her work in craft beer, Mary is also an accomplished operatic soprano. She has worked professionally as a performer, administrator, and educator in the creative arts for over 15 years.

Her first beer love: Edmund Fitzgerald Porter from Great Lakes Brewing in Cleveland, OH.

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