High Altitude Baking: Crispy-crunchy ginger triangles (recipe)
October 2, 2014
Editor's note: High altitude makes cookies spread in the pan, cakes fall and few baked goods turn out as they do at sea level. This twice-monthly column presents recipes and tips to make baking in the mountains successful.
Ooh, the hot-sweet taste of candied ginger — it's close to addictive. If you're one of the many who keep coming back to it for one more bite, you'll like these cookies. That taste you love is enhanced by a crispy, crunchy texture with a strong appeal of its own — together, they're winners. Serve this little treasure with fresh fruit, ice cream or sorbet for a simple, sophisticated dessert.
The cookie is fun to make, requiring no mixer, not even a spoon, just a bowl, a whisk and your hands. Combine the dry ingredients, add the liquid, and toss to blend. Squeeze the dough into clumps, and drop them in the pan. That's all there is to it.
If you don't purchase the ginger minced and must chop it yourself, grease your knife and clean it frequently to prevent the ginger from sticking to it.
Crispy-crunchy ginger triangles
(Make in a 7½-inch tart pan or 8-inch springform pan.)
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½ cup flour (spoon and level)
¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons semolina flour (I use Bob's Red Mill)
¼ cup superfine sugar, preferably Baker's
½ teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 ½ tablespoons minced candied ginger, lightly packed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees with a rack in the center position.
Step 2: Combine the flour, semolina, sugar, baking powder and salt in a mixing bowl, and whisk vigorously until thoroughly combined. Add the minced ginger, and stir to distribute throughout the dry ingredients.
Step 3: Stir the vanilla into the melted butter, and add to the dry ingredients. Use your fingers to mix until all the dry ingredients are evenly moistened.
Step 4: Pinch ¼ to ½ teaspoon-sized amounts of dough into clumps (like making streusel), and drop them evenly over the bottom of the pan (no need to grease it) until you've used all the dough and covered the pan bottom. Don't press them into the pan or flatten them; they should remain irregular and pebbly.
Step 5: Bake until set, golden brown, and pulling away slightly from the pan's edge, about 30 to 38 minutes. Move to a rack to cool for about 15 minutes.
Step 6: While still warm and in the pan, use a bench knife, pizza wheel or sharp knife to cut into eight wedges of equal size. Let cool completely. Serve or store, covered, at room temperature for five days, or freeze for a month. The ginger taste intensifies over time, so for a stronger hit of it, make the cookies a day before serving.
This is a variation of a recipe from "Baking for All Occasions." Vera Dawson, author of the new high-altitude cookbook "Cookies in the Clouds" (available at The Bookworm of Edwards and The Next Page Books & Nosh in Frisco) is a chef instructor with CMC's Culinary Institute. Her recipes have been tested in her Summit County home kitchen and, whenever necessary, altered until they work at our altitude. Contact her at email@example.com.
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