Cookie Monster: Brown Sugar Cookies
I was that kid who has to sit at the front of the school bus with all the teachers because I get car sick easily. Once we even had to pull over so I could yak on the side of the road while all my friends remained inside the vehicle, laughing and gossiping in the back. Did I mention I was in college?
That's right. Carsickness isn't just a plight of the young. I was 22 years old, on a senior class trip to Italy. I didn't know before I signed up that we'd spend most mornings on a bus driven by a madman, winding through the mountain roads of Umbria. My saving grace was a pack of gingery cookies which I would blindly nibble on while asking my boyfriend to narrate the scenery. The whole experience wasn't too unpleasant—since we were in Italy, our bus was outfitted with an espresso machine below the gear shift—and our stunning destinations made surviving the bus more than worth it.
The pack of cookies which saved my life were a cross between a molasses and a sugar cookie. They were chewy and lightly spiced with ginger. The molasses taste was subtle and sugary, and for the longest time I couldn't make a cookie that recreated the flavor. It turns out that those cookies probably derived their molasses flavor from brown sugar rather than molasses, which is why this recipe was a surprise winner. Their texture is perfectly chewy and they become nicely crinkled on top when baked. There is a hint of cinnamon and ground ginger, which complements the warm molasses flavor.
Setting aside my personal feelings of nostalgia towards these cookies ("Remember that time I thought I was going to die on the way to Montefalco?" *Sigh* nibble, nibble. "We never have fun like that anymore.") I think you'll like their old-school, boxed gingersnap appearance and find their buttery, brown sugar taste to be addictive.
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About the author: Carrie Vasios is the Community Manager of Serious Eats and writes the Wake and Bake, Cookie Monster, and Serious Entertaining columns. She likes perusing her large collection of cookbooks while eating jam from the jar.