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  • Writer's pictureSierra Bigham

Winter Warmer Ginger Cookies

Herb Inspired Recipe BY SUMMER ISON In the deepest darkest part of winter, warming herbs are such a delight! Our current seasonal tea blend Winter Warmer features Cinnamon, Ginger, Elderflower, Ashwagandha and Licorice Root. This tea is not only delicately smooth and delicious but also provides the combined health boosting benefits of these powerhouse herbs- offering important immune, digestive and cardiovascular support while gently stimulating and uplifting the whole body system.

Winter Warmer Ginger Cookies These chewy ginger cookies are enhanced by infusing the butter (or oil) in the recipe with the loose herbs of the Winter Warmer tea blend (above) in a double boiler. I used about a 1/4 C loose tea for the 6 Tbsp of butter in the recipe and infused for 20-30 minutes, then strained the infused butter through a wire sieve. It is then ready to combine with the wet ingredients as directed. We were lucky enough to have ginger growing in a pot in our kitchen and utilized fresh grated ginger root in the recipe, which I highly recommend if at all possible. Growing ginger in a pot on the porch that you can move indoors when the weather gets inclimate is fun and therapeutic. I harvested part of it in the fall for fire cider (a spicy health tonic made with vinegar and herbs- there are many great recipes and variations on the internet) and saved the rest for a New Year's Eve harvest, most of which I froze to grate as desired for weeks to come. I also drew and painted this ginger because I am especially infatuated with it's peculiar beauty, but I don't expect you to go that far. Of course, you can also usually get fresh ginger root at Meijer- and that is still better than using powdered. In the unfortunate event that fresh ginger root will not grace you with it's presence, these cookies are still dangerously delectable. The hefty molasses content provides a substantial amount of iron, and the sugar can be decreased or substituted partially with maple syrup without compromising the outcome. I omitted the cloves and included the lemon, feel free to tweak to your preferences. I found this recipe on the author had adapted it from The Joy of Cooking, and of course I have put my own spin on it...

Ingredients 3 C all-purpose flour 1 1/2 tsp baking powder 3/4 tsp baking soda 1/4 tsp salt 1 Tbsp ground ginger 1 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon 1/4 tsp ground cloves (optional) 6 Tbsp unsalted butter, infused (you may substitute coconut oil for a dairy free option) 3/4 C dark brown sugar 1 large egg 1/2 C molasses 2 tsp vanilla extract 1 tsp finely grated lemon zest (optional) In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and cloves until well blended. *If using powdered ginger, add to dry ingredients In a large bowl beat (infused) butter (or oil), brown sugar, and egg on medium speed until well blended. Add molasses, vanilla, lemon zest and fresh ginger* and continue to mix Gradually stir in dry ingredients until blended and smooth Divide dough in half, wrap each half in plastic and let stand at room temperature for at least 2 hrs The dough can be refrigerated for up to 4 days but in this case allow to return to room temp before handling Grease cookie sheets or line with parchment paper Place 1 portion of dough on a lightly floured surface, sprinkle flour over dough and rolling pin and roll to 1/4" thick Cut with desired cookie cutter -OR- Roll into balls and flatten slightly with a fork Bake 1 sheet at a time for 7-10 minutes (lower time= softer cookies) Remove cookies promptly and allow to cool until firm enough to move to a wire rack I did not think these needed any glaze or frosting- Enjoy with a cup of Winter Warmer tea!

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