Old-Fashioned Lemon Ginger Crinkle Cookies are little sugar-coated pillows of goodness, lightly crisp on the outside and tender, almost cake-like on the inside. You notice the light, lemony flavour immediately; the tangy ginger tends to creep up on you, with a lovely, warming kick. An homage to the lemon-ginger herb teas that I often enjoy, these Old-Fashioned Lemon Ginger Crinkle Cookies are very hard to resist – even for someone like me who almost never eats more than two cookies at the same time.
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These Lemon Ginger Crinkle Cookies are relatively similar to my very popular Lemon Crinkle Cookies, a recipe I have been making since I was a kid. I reduced the butter and changed the method a bit to produce cookies that are slightly fluffier on the inside than traditional crinkles. Of course, I also added ginger. I love ginger and so does everyone in our family. My Triple Ginger Pound Cake with its three layers of ginger flavour is proof positive of that. If you prefer a milder flavour, I recommend you reduce the ginger from two and a half teaspoons to just two teaspoons.
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I use a trio of lemon – rind, juice and lemon extract to give layers of flavour that make these cookies really special. Three lemon ingredients may seem excessive, but trust me, it really isn’t. Don’t leave out the lemon extract unless you really can’t get it – or you find yourself mid-recipe and there’s none in the cupboard! (Not that this has ever happened to me <ahem>.)
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I generally use golden caster sugar for my Lemon Ginger Crinkle Cookies. A slightly finer sugar made from unrefined sugar cane or beets, golden caster sugar has a lovely colour which gives the cookies a slightly richer flavour and warmer colour. Golden caster sugar is hard to find outside of the UK though, so do feel free to use ordinary granulated sugar in its place.
Perfect with a cup of tea or a nice cold glass of milk, Old-Fashioned Lemon Ginger Crinkle Cookies are so delicious that I often find myself opening the cookie jar only to find they are all gone! If you have slightly less enthusiastic cookie monsters at your house than I do, the cookies will keep well in a sealed container at room temperature for three to five days.
- 2 cups plain (all purpose) flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- generous pinch of salt
- 2½ teaspoons ground ginger
- ½ cup softened unsalted butter
- 1 cup sugar (golden caster sugar if possible but granulated sugar is fine)
- 1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk, beaten together
- the finely grated zest of a lemon
- 1 teaspoon lemon extract
- 1½ tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- ½ cup sugar (golden caster sugar if possible but granulated sugar is fine)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C / fan ovens 165°C).
- Sift the flour, baking powder, salt and ginger into a medium bowl. Set aside.
- Cream the butter and 1 cup sugar together in an electric mixer until light and fluffy.
- Beat in the egg and egg yolk.
- With the mixer on medium speed, add the lemon zest, lemon extract and the squeezed lemon juice.
- With the mixer on low, gradually add the flour mixture, blending the mixture well until smooth. (Do not beat at this point.)
- Cover the dough and put it in the fridge for at least 10 minutes and up to half an hour.
- After the dough is chilled, pour the ½ cup sugar into a plate or bowl with raised edges.
- Roll the chilled dough into balls about 1 inch in circumference between the palms of your hands.
- Roll each cookie in sugar.
- Place each cookie about two inches apart on baking trays or cookie sheets.(You may need to bake the cookies in batches.)
- Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until just beginning to turn a light golden shade. Keep an eye on the cookies so they do not burn.
- Remove the baking trays from the oven and allow the cookies to cool for five minutes before carefully removing with an egg lifter or spatula.
- Cool completely on wire racks (if you can resist them!).
- When cool, store in a sealed container at room temperature. Makes about 3 dozen cookies.