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Winter is almost behind us – we are starting to see beautiful spring produce pop up in the grocery stores (I’m looking at you, asparagus) and soon Farmers’ Markets will open up for the season. While we wait for spring to come full force, we can hang onto the last memories of winter with some ginger molasses cookies. Cranking up the oven, enjoying the smells of baking cookies and savoring the flavors of warming spices can be our last farewell!
Why we love it?
Let’s learn about molasses! There are several different types of molasses, determined by the number of times raw sugar was boiled down to remove the sucrose. The lightest is from the first boiling (thus will be the sweetest); the second is the dark molasses and this is the type most commonly used in baking; the last is blackstrap molasses, produced from a third boiling. Although blackstrap molasses is made from the same cane sugar, it is much more nutrient-dense than cane syrup or the light and dark molasses.
Blackstrap molasses provides a significant amount of calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium and vitamin B6. In fact, 1 tablespoon of blackstrap molasses will contain 10% of the daily value of calcium and magnesium, 20% of iron, 8% potassium and vitamin B6. Blackstrap molasses are even considered as a supplement for iron deficiency anemia! With the relatively high amount of calcium per tablespoon, blackstrap molasses can be consumed as a source of dairy-free calcium.
There are numerous health benefits of blackstrap molasses and the nutrients it contains including stabilizing blood sugar levels, helping with PMS symptoms, serving as a natural remedy for depression and ADD/ADHD, and more.
Because blackstrap molasses will be the least sweet of the molasses, they may not work in all recipes. Blackstrap molasses can be a substitute for sugar or syrup in some recipes or can be added to baked goods to boost the nutritional profile (plus molasses are vegan, paleo and AIP friendly!). Blackstrap molasses are also delicious in savory recipes like baked beans or pulled pork.
Sulfur dioxide is used to lighten the color of the molasses or to help extend its shelf life; since it acts as a preservative, unsulphured molasses are the better choice, as indicated in this recipe. If you enjoy the flavor of blackstrap molasses, feel free to substitute blackstrap in this recipe! The coconut sugar will be the main source of sweetness, so if you are looking for a less sweet and more nutrient-rich recipe, blackstrap molasses may be a great option for you.
- 1 cup/256g almond butter (roasted)
- 3 tablespoons/45g unsulphured molasses
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger root
- ½ cup/96g coconut sugar
- ¼ cup/30g coconut flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- A pinch of freshly ground white pepper
1.Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2.In the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment or by hand, beat together the almond butter, molasses, eggs and freshly grated ginger until smooth.
3.Into a medium bowl, mix together coconut sugar, coconut flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, allspice, salt and pepper.
4.Slowly add the sugar and spice mixture to the almond butter mixture while mixing on low until just combined.
5.Drop the dough by the rounded teaspoonfuls about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets, slightly flatten the top.
6.Bake cookies, rotating baking sheets halfway through, until firm around the edges and starting to crack in the center (the cookies will look slightly puffed but will flatten and crackle more as they cool), about 12-15 minutes. Cool 2 minutes on the baking sheets out of the oven then transfer the parchment paper with the cookies to wire racks to cool completely.
Yield: 2 1/2 dozens
(Recipe by Chef Lynda Lacher)
Daina Rasutis is a current student of NTI’s Nutrition Therapist Master Program. She plans to use her certification to spark a craving for health through movement, sustainable living and, of course, nourishing food. Follow Daina’s cooking creations and lifestyle tips at www.tabletocrave.com
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