1/2 cup (115 g) unsalted butter at room temperature
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1/4 cup molasses, robust flavored preferred
1 cup (140 g) all-purpose flour
3/4 cup (100 g) white whole wheat flour (or just replace with all-purpose if you don’t have any)
1 cup (200 g) crystallized ginger (chopped into 1/4-inch pieces), divided
1 cup (165 g) dried tart cherries (chopped in half if large), divided
1/4 cup (50 g) golden raisins
1/4 cup (55 g) dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons whole milk
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup (115 g) confectioners’ (powdered) sugar
1. Preheat the oven to 350˚F and lightly spray a 10 x 13 inch baking sheet with cooking oil. Place a large enough piece of parchment paper over the sheet that a little bit of it is hanging over the edges of the pan.
2. Place the butter, spices, salt, baking powder and baking soda in the bowl of stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat the butter until it is smooth, all the dry ingredients are incorporated and the color is a uniform brown. Add the vanilla and dark brown sugar and beat to incorporate. Add the egg and egg yolk and beat to incorporate. Add the molasses and beat to incorporate.
3. Add both flours and beat to incorporate. Add 1/2 cup of crystallized ginger, 1/2 cup of dried tart cherries and the golden raisins to the cookie dough. Mix to incorporate. Scrape the dough into the baking sheet and spread the dough all the way to the edges. It will be sticky and the dough will seem thin once you’ve evenly spread it out. Bake in the oven for 18-20 minutes or until the edges of the cookie look darker brown and the center looks dry and baked. Let cool in the pan, preferably overnight but until completely cool before icing.
4. To make the icing, place the sugar, milk, butter and vanilla in a small pan and cook until the sugar dissolves and the butter melts. Sift the confectioners’ (powdered) sugar into the pan and whisk to dissolve. If the icing seems to thin, add extra confectioners’ sugar (a tablespoon at a time) until thick enough to hold it’s shape when drizzled on some paper. If it seems too thick, thin with a teaspoon of milk at a time. Drizzle half the icing on the cooled cookie (I poured the icing into a squeeze bottle and used that for more precision but you can free form it with a spoon or a plastic ziplock bag with the corner snipped off). Sprinkle the remaining crystallized ginger and dried tart cherries over the top of the hermits, pressing into the icing to attach them. Then drizzle the remaining icing over the ginger and dried tart cherries. Let icing dry for 15 minutes or longer before cutting and serving.
Makes 36 cookie bars.
original recipe here