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Vanilla Spice Cookies



These cookies have become somewhat of a sensation. They have taken on a life of their own I truly could not have anticipated. They do something to people. People become obsessed. Even non-sweet-loving people. They will reluctantly try one and quickly eat through a half dozen. I have seen this happen many times. It is something about their crispy-chewy texture combo and gentle spiced flavour that gets people. They are the perfect cookie.


They hold a very special place in my heart as they are the first baking recipe I ever created. In truth, they are a heavily adapted recipe. I had a somewhat similar chocolate variety at a cookie swap years ago and that’s what set them in motion. The chocolate cookie I had was not the most chocolate-y or flavourful but I was taken with the texture. It was quite puffy and soft, and unlike anything I had ever tasted before. It was an old Betty Crocker recipe that used powdered sugar in place of white sugar. What resulted was a pillow-y cookie that was light while still being rich and decadent.


When I looked up the recipe later, I started to think of ways I could adapt it to have a different flavour. As it was nearing the holidays, and I am a sucker for gingerbread, I decided to use the rough measurements of the original recipe, subbing in white chocolate chips and then throwing caution to the wind and adding in molasses and a bunch of warming spices. The result was heaven and I quickly tried to scribble down the rough recipe while it was fresh in mind. Over the last five years I have tweaked here and there (including a multiple-level smackdown sequence) and have truly perfected it. This recipe is a masterpiece and I am so excited to share it with you!


Enjoy these little morsels of perfection, and share them with those you love!





VANILLA SPICE COOKIES

Makes a lot of cookies


 

1 cup white chocolate chips

1 1/3 cups salted butter, softened

5 cups powdered sugar, plus more for decoration

4 eggs

2 tsp pure vanilla extract

1/4 cup molasses

5 cups flour

2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

2 tsp ground ginger

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/2 tsp cloves

1/2 tsp allspice


 

  1. Melt white chocolate chips. In a large bowl, stir butter into melted white chocolate chips until there are pea-sized chunks of butter visible.

  2. Add powdered sugar and stir to combine. The dough will look quite dry at this point.

  3. Add eggs, vanilla and molasses and whisk until smooth. Set aside.

  4. In another large bowl whisk flour, baking soda, salt and spices to combine.

  5. Add 1/2 the dry ingredient mixture to the wet ingredients and stir to combine. Add the second 1/2 of the dry ingredients and stir until incorporated. The dough will look dry, but keep mixing. Once there is no residual flour, roll the dough into 1-2 inch balls and place on parchment-lined sheet pans, leaving a few inches between each (I place 10-12 on a standard cookie sheet). If you are working with limited fridge space, you can also refrigerate the dough in the bowl, covering with the tea cloth, however it is much harder to scoop and form the dough into balls once it's cold!

  6. Place in the fridge for at least 1 hour up to overnight. (If putting them in the fridge overnight, cover with a clean, slightly damp tea cloth to prevent drying).

  7. When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350F.

  8. Bake for 5-7 minutes until the cookies begin to puff up. Remove from the oven and smack the pan down on a counter or the stovetop to release the air from the cookies. Place back in the oven. Bake for another 3-4 minutes, then repeat the process. Place back in the oven. Once the cookies are golden brown and still slightly molten in the centre, remove from the oven. DO NOT OVER-BAKE! Give them one final smack, let cool on the pan for 1-2 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack.

  9. Using a mesh strainer, dust cookies liberally with powdered sugar while they are still slightly warm.





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