If I had a signature cookie, I guess this would have to be it. I make these every Christmas, and they’re always a big hit. Why? Because they have a ton of flavor, they are perfectly chewy, and the cayenne sets your throat on fire. Of course you can adjust or omit the red pepper to suit your taste. When I make these for others, I cut the cayenne in half and it still gives you some noticable heat. These will not disappoint.
Extra Spicy Gingersnaps
Adapted from Food Network
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger, or more to taste
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or to taste)
8 tablespoons (1 stick) cool unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup granulated sugar, plus extra for rolling
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/3 cup molasses (not blackstrap)
2 large egg whites
Combine the flour, baking soda, and spices in a mixing bowl and set aside. Cream the butter until smooth and fluffy in a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (or using a hand mixer). Add the sugars and mix. Add the molasses and mix. Add the egg whites in 2 batches, mixing to combine after each addition. Add the dry ingredients in three batches, mixing to combine after each addition.
Heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spread a few tablespoons of granulated sugar on a small plate.
Roll the dough into 3/4-inch balls, then roll each ball in the sugar until lightly coated. Transfer to parchment lined cookie sheets, leaving 1-inch of space between the cookies. Bake until browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Let cool on wire racks and store in an airtight container.