Gingersnaps are another one of my grandma's specialties. This recipe was also featured in the Better Homes and Gardens Christmas Cookies magazine. The traditional gingersnaps are sprinkled with coarse white sugar but to jazz them up for Christmas, you can use red and green sugars.
If you would like to freeze these gingersnaps or any other Christmas cookies until your guests arrive this year, here are some of my grandma's tips for freezing. My grandma is the master at freezing cookies and well just about anything else. I have fond memories of my cousins and I sneaking down to the basement in my grandparent's house to steal cookies (and mini Snicker's bars) from her freezer. Here are her tips for keeping your cookies fresh and delicious right out of the freezer!
1. Store cookies in plastic-lined tin cans. My grandma is famous for storing her cookies in old metal coffee tins, but any tin container will do. My grandma believes that plastic containers absorb odors and take the moisture out of the cookies.
2. Make the cookies taste fresh by freezing different types of cookies in separate containers. This prevents cookies from taking on different flavors.
1/2 cup oleo (80 percent vegetable oil margarine) or you can use butter
1/4 cup shortening
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. salt
1/3 cup mild-flavor molasses
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup coarse white or colored sugar
In a large bowl, combine oleo (or butter) and shortening. Beat with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar, brown sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and salt. Beat until combined, scraping bowl occasionally. Beat until combined, scraping bowl occasionally. Beat in egg and molasses until combined. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Using a wooden spoon, stir in any remaining flour. Cover and chill for 2 hours or until dough is easy to handle.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place the coarse sugar in a small bowl. Shape dough into 1-inch balls; roll balls in sugar. Place balls 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.
Bake in a preheated oven about 10 minutes or until tops are crackled and edges are firm. Transfer cookies to a wire rack; let cool.