I’m not a baker, in fact my antics in the kitchen are more for my own personal pleasure and relaxation than anything else. I’m terrified when people ask me to cook for them and when they insist I do retarded things like cupcakes it’s border line traumatic. When Mahindra Rise approached me to take part in the #SeedTheRiseChallenge which is this extremely interesting activity that helps raise awareness about the plight of our Indian farmer and the charity work they’re doing, it was hard to say no. My challenge was simple. To incorporate an ingredient produced locally by our farmers and make a dish with it. I was given ginger because believe it or not, India is one of the world’s largest producers of ginger!
I could have made a number of things, ginger tea, ginger chutney, a garlic ginger anything or a soy ginger salad dressing. I wanted to step out of my comfort zone and really use the ingredient in the best way possible. I decided to bake some ginger cookies which is my absolute very first attempt at baking.
While you can use ginger powder or just grind fresh ginger and add it to the cookie mix, I decided to go really old school and make some candied ginger which I added to the cookies. So instead of one recipe I have two ( you can eat the candied ginger on it’s own as a snack, makes good ginger ice cream as well. ) Hope you enjoy this one!
Ginger Cookies Recipe
170 grams of Sugar
100 grams of butter
375 grams or 13oz of flour
3 tablespoons of Molases or you can use honey instead
A pinch of Salt
2 teaspoons of Baking Soda
1 teaspoon of Cinnamon
1 teaspoon of Ginger Powder OR 1 piece of candied ginger ( recipe for candied ginger below )
1. Add the butter ( preferably room temperature and not cold ) and sugar and stir it all together, Mix well.
2. To this mixture add the honey or molasses and keep stirring it.
3. Add the egg to this and mix it all well.
4. Start adding the flour to this mixture. Don’t add it all together, start a bit at a time. so add about half the flour and mix well.
5. Add the baking soda, cinnamon powder, ginger powder or bits of candied ginger ( you can also add both if you want a more intense flavour ) and mix in.
6. Add the rest of the flour to the mixture and it will start to form a sort of dough. If you can’t keep using a spatula at this stage you can use your hands to mix all the ingredients well. Place the dough in the refrigerator for about 30 mins.
7. Pre heat your oven for ten mins. Grease your baking tray with butter so the cookies don’t stick.
8. Roll out the dough into little balls, flatten them a slight bit and dip one side in some of the sugar and place them on the baking tray. Keep repeating till all the dough is over. If it all doesn’t fit you can use the rest of the dough later or do it in batches.
9. Bake in the oven for about 10 mins and serve warm.
Ginger cut into small pieces or thinnly sliced
1 cup of sugar
2 cups of water
1. Place the cut pieces of ginger ( please peel the skin off ) in a pot of water. The ginger should be completely in water and not sticking out at all. Boil the ginger and then let it simmer and cook for about 10 mins.
2. Drain the water and keep the fresh pieces. You could drink this water as it makes a perfect base for cocktails or even ginger tea.
3. In the same pot, fill a cup of sugar and a cup of water and bring it to a boil. Add the ginger and keep cooking till the sugar dissolves completely. Cook for another 10 mins. The sugar might turn into a bit of a syrup that’s absolutely fine just keep cooking it.
4. Drain any excess water and dry the ginger pieces slight and toss them in a bowl of icing sugar so the sugar coats the ginger pieces. ( use icing sugar or castor sugar as its thin and fine and will coat better. )
5. You can store these and use it in your recipes or just eat them as snacks. If you are using it in the recipe for cookies, make sure you cut much smaller pieces so you don’t get big chunks in the cookies.
A little bit about the campaign –
Seed The Rise Campaign – a fundraising initiative set up by Mahindra and Mahindra to improve the lives of farmers.
Through this campaign, Mahindra is looking to raise Rs. 2 crores from the public for this cause – an amount which they will match through their own donation as well. All funds collected will go towards supporting 5 key NGO run projects that strategically aim at bettering the farmers’ lives in varied ways including setting up drip irrigation, sustainable farming units and educating the girl child.