This recipe makes three dozen medium cookies. We used star cookie cutters for the shapes. You can use other shapes; baking times will vary according to cookie size.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for rolling
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1/3 cup packed dark-brown sugar
- 1/3 cup unsulfured molasses
- 1 large egg
- Decorating sugar or sprinkles (optional)
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, spices, baking soda, and salt; set aside. With an electric mixer, beat butter and brown sugar until smooth. Beat in molasses and egg. With mixer on low, add dry ingredients; mix just until a dough forms. Place dough on floured plastic wrap; pat into an 8-inch square. Wrap well; chill until firm, 1 to 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Divide dough in half. Working with one half at a time (rewrap and refrigerate other half), place dough on floured parchment or waxed paper; roll out 1/8 inch thick, turning, lifting, and flouring dough (and rolling pin) as needed. Freeze dough (on paper) until firm, about 20 minutes.
Loosen dough from paper. Cut out shapes, and transfer to baking sheets. Decorate with sugar or sprinkles, as desired.
Bake until firm and edges just begin to darken, 10 to 18 minutes, depending on size. Cool completely on baking sheets.