Get out your cookie decorating kit and prepare the foundation of your holiday gingerbread army. From The Art of the Cookie.
Makes about 30 cookies
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
2 tablespoons molasses
1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger
1. In a bowl, whisk together the 3 cups flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, ground ginger, cinnamon, and allspice. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat the butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy, 2—3 minutes. Add the egg, molasses, and fresh ginger and beat on low speed until the egg is completely incorporated. Beating on low speed, slowly add the flour mixture and continue to beat until just incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
2. Press the dough into a rough rectangle, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour or up to overnight. (The dough can be wrapped well and frozen for up to 1 month.)
3. Follow the desired recipe for rolling and cutting, or do the following: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 3 baking sheets with parchment paper. On a lightly floured work surface, using a floured rolling pin, roll out the chilled dough until about 1/4 inch thick. Using cookie cutters or as directed in the recipe, cut the cookies into the desired shapes. Use a metal spatula to transfer the cookies to the prepared sheets, spacing them 1 inch apart. Press the dough scraps together, roll out, and cut out additional shapes.
4. Follow the desired recipe for baking and cooling, or do the following: Bake 1 sheet at a time until the cookies begin to turn a shade darker around the edges and are firm to the touch, 12-15 minutes (or as indicated in the recipe). Let cool on the sheets for 5 minutes. Using the metal spatula, transfer to wire racks and let cool completely, about 30 minutes.
5. Decorate the cookies as desired.