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Monday, December 31, 2012

Get in my belly: Chai-Spiced Sugar Cookies

A friend gave me a box of these gems last Christmas. They have fast become a family favorite. This year I included them in Christmas treat bags I put together for friends. (Along with homemade loaves of Boule bread, Bourbon bacon brownies, hot & spicy mixed nuts, and Momofuku compost cookies.)

Chai-Spiced Sugar Cookies
adapted from My Baking Addiction
(I added an egg and additional spices. I also swapped out some of the butter for shortening (organic, expeller pressed shortening) so they cookies will be a bit chewier.)

2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups white sugar
3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
3/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening (organic, expeller pressed if you can get it)
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.

Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

In another bowl mix sugar, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, allspice and black pepper. Remove 1/4 cup of the mixture and set aside for rolling the dough balls.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter and sugar mixture. Beat until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla, mixing until fully incorporated. Slowly blend in the flower mixture, mixing just until incorporated. At this point the dough will look a bit dry. Don't worry, when you roll the dough balls everything will be fine.

Using a small cookie scoop (2 teaspoons) roll dough into balls. Roll dough balls in reserved sugar mixture and place on prepared cookie sheet, leaving 1 1/2 inches between each ball.

Bake for 8-10 minutes, until the cookies begin to crack. Let cool slightly on baking sheet then remove and place on cooling rack.

yield: approximately 3 1/2 dozen cookies.

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