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Saturday, December 8, 2012

Gingerbread Snowball Cookies: Holiday Cookie Share w/ Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice and McCormick

I am excited to feature one of my oldest blogging friends today, Reeni of Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice.  We are joining forces with McCormick to bring you a Holiday Cookie Share.  Right here, you will find Reeni's beautiful Gingerbread Snowballs, and if you head over to her place, you can check out the Peppermint Slice 'n Bakes that I shared with her.  Please welcome the talented Reeni!
  I’m thrilled to take part in a Holiday Cookie Share with Heather sponsored by McCormick. I brought my gingerbread snowball cookies to the swap. Lately, I have gingerbread on the brain. It’s no secret I’m hopelessly in love with cinnamon. Along with that comes a love for warm spices in general. Suffice it to say when I opened my “cookie share care package” from McCormick and pulled out ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla my heart was glad. It was fate.
The gingerbread snowballs are bursting with all of those warm, zingy spices plus a little touch of ground cloves and molasses to deepen their flavors. They’re speckled on the inside with white chocolate chips and glazed on the tops with more of the same to give them a perfect balance of sweet and spicy.

While most snowball cookies have a dusting of confectioners’ sugar I think coconut flakes are more fitting. They look like fat, fluffy snowflakes. The type so heavy with moisture they seem elongated as they fall. The kind of snow that makes the best snowmen . . . and snowballs!

I have a long list of gingerbread flavored recipes I plan to bake between now and Christmas. Some sweet and some savory. That’s right. I said it. Savory. The other day I looked at a piece of chicken and my mind went there. Gingerbread chicken. You’d eat it right?

I told you I had gingerbread on the brain. Stuck there.

If gingerbread chicken doesn’t appeal to you I hope these do! They have a slightly addictive quality that will keep you coming back for more.

It’s the magic in the spices.

Gingerbread Snowballs

by Reeni Pisano (of Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice)
Prep Time: 30-40 minutes (partly unattended)
Cook Time: 10-11 minutes
Keywords: bake dessert spice molasses white chocolate Christmas cookie American winter

Ingredients (~3 dozen)
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons molasses (unsulphured) or honey
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 + 1/2 cups coconut flakes (sweetened or unsweetened)
In a medium bowl whisk flour and salt together.

In a large bowl beat butter using an electric mixer on high speed 1-2 minutes until fluffy. Add sugar and beat until light and fluffy 2-3 minutes.

Beat in molasses and heavy cream on low speed then add all the spices, vanilla and egg. Beat on low until well combined.

Add the flour 1/3 at a time beating after each addition. The dough will be thick. Mix in chocolate chips by hand. Refrigerate 20 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silpats. Scoop rounded tablespoonfuls of the dough and roll into balls. Set them about 2 inches apart on the baking sheets and bake for 10-11 minutes, rotating the sheets halfway through, until lightly golden around the edges.

Remove to wire racks to cool.

Once the cookies are completely cool make the glaze by melting the white chocolate with the heavy cream in a medium bowl using the chocolate setting of your microwave. Microwave in 25 second increments, stirring until completely smooth.

Add the coconut flakes to a wide shallow bowl. Dip the tops of each cookie one at time into the chocolate, allow excess to drip off then dip into the coconut flakes. Reheat the chocolate if needed.

Store in a cool, dry place tightly covered up to 10 days.

My Holiday Baking Tip:
To freeze Christmas cookies layer them in freezer proof containers with parchment paper between them. It's best to freeze them plain without frosting, fillings or decorations. To defrost remove from the containers and spread them out on cookies sheets or cutting boards until completely defrosted. Once completely thawed decorate and store as you normally would.
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*In full disclosure this is a sponsored post. I received monetary compensation and free products to create my recipe and post. All opinions are my own.

Thanks so much, Reeni...I couldn't have asked for anything more delectable.  Oh, and for the record, I'm totally on board with some Gingerbread Chicken!  Here's a sneak peek at the Peppermint-Lover's Cookie Share Box... head over to Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice to check it out!

And don't forget to pick up your McCormick's spices, flavorings, and colorings and get started with your holiday baking.  What would you bring to a Holiday Cookie Share?  I'd love to know, feel free to leave links in the comments!

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