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Who Put Chocolate in My Gingerbread?

Why, Martha Stewart, of course.

Take rich, dark, semi-sweet chocolate chunks. Pair them in a cookie of sticky molasses, ground cloves, ground cinnamon, ground ginger, plus fresh ginger, and you get a cookie that is chewy-licious. It’s like your favorite spicy gingerbread, but with the lushness of good dark chocolate to boot.

Even my husband, who is not always a fan of ginger (what’s up with that?), ate one cookie after another after these babies came out of the oven. See those hands above? Those are his, reaching yet again for another cookie.

“Chewy Chocolate Gingerbread Cookies” are from “Martha Stewart’s Cookies” (Clarkson Potter). If you haven’t already heard it by now, it’s become one of my favorite cookie books. I’ve made only about four of its 175 cookie recipes. But don’t be surprised if I bake my way through this book.

The cookbook is the perfect holiday gift for any cookie-loving friend. Wrap it up with a few home-baked cookies. Well, if you can spare any, that is. In my household, that’s always a tough challenge.

Chewy Chocolate Gingerbread Cookies

(makes 2 dozen)

1 1/2 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

1 1/4 teaspoons ground ginger

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

1 tablespoon unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder

1/4 pound (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 tablespoon freshly grated peeled ginger

1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar

1/2 cup unsulfered molasses

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons boiling water

7 ounces best-quality semi-sweet chocolate, cut into 1/4-inch chunks

1/4 cup granulated sugar


Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a bowl, sift together flour, ground ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and cocoa. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and fresh ginger on medium speed until lightened, about 4 minutes. Add brown sugar; beat until combined. Add molasses; beat until combined

In a small bowl, dissolve baking soda in boiling water. Beat half of flour mixture into butter mixture. Beat in baking soda mixture, then remaining half of flour mixture. Mix in chocolate; turn onto plastic wrap. Pat out to a 1-inch thickness; seal with wrap. Refrigerate until firm, 2 hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Roll dough into 1 1/2-inch balls; place 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Chill 20 minutes. Roll in granulated sugar. Bake until surfaces just begin to crack, 10 to 12 minutes, rotating halfway through. Let cool 5 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and cool completely. Cookies are best the day they are made, but can be stored in airtight containers at room temperature for up to 5 days.

From “Martha Stewart’s Cookies”