These have the typical spicy aroma and flavor of the gingerbread cookies we eat during the holiday season, but they’re made spooky and fun for Halloween with skeleton designs.
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/4 cup vegetable shortening, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 2/3 cup molasses
- 1 large egg
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Sift the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, cloves, and salt into a medium bowl. Set aside.
In a large bowl, beat the butter and shortening until well-combined, about 1 minute. Add the brown sugar and beat until the mixture is light in texture and color. Beat in the molasses and egg. Using a wooden spoon, gradually mix in the flour mixture to make a stiff dough. Divide the dough into two thick disks and wrap each disk in plastic wrap. Refrigerate until chilled, about 3 hours.
To roll out the cookies, work with one disk at a time, keeping the other disk refrigerated. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let stand at room temperature until just warm enough to roll out without cracking, about 10 minutes. Place the dough on a lightly floured work surface and sprinkle the top of the dough with flour. Roll out the dough 1/8 inch thick, being sure that the dough isn’t sticking to the work surface. For softer cookies, roll out slightly thicker. Using cookie cutters, cut out the cookies and transfer to nonstick cookie sheets, placing the cookies 1 inch apart. Gently knead the scraps together and form into another disk. Wrap and chill for 5 minutes before rolling out again to cut out more cookies.
Bake, switching the positions of the cookies from top to bottom and back to front halfway through baking, until the edges of the cookies are set and crisp, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool on the sheets for 2 minutes, then transfer to wire cake racks to cool completely.