Creamy mascarpone and real maple syrup come together to frost these soft molasses cookies.
(to skip to recipe, scroll to the bottom)
Christmas with the in-laws consists of many things, but the three things that instantly come to mind are: mulled wine, molasses cookies and three-layer Christmas Jello. Personally I could heave the Jello out the window, but the other two I’ll devour with glee! I know lots of folks love their Jello, however I am not one of them. I just don’t see the point. But I digress, this post is not about Jello. This post is about molasses cookies!
I love the deep, rich taste of molasses cookies. My Christmas tray usually displays these Molasses Butterscotch Cookies. I adore these cookies, but sometimes you just have to change things up a bit, you know, keep things fresh. Since I equate molasses cookies with my mother in-law, I thought I would go straight to the source and try out her recipe.
The original recipe calls for all shortening. I never use all shortening in cookies, in fact the only time I even use shortening is when I make buttercream. I was reluctant at first, but I was trying to stay true to the recipe, so I went with it. If you are averse to trying all shortening, I totally understand. You could use all butter or a mixture of the two but your cookies will have a different texture, they will spread and be crispier.
The original recipe instructs you to refrigerate your dough then roll your dough balls in granulated sugar before baking. I definitely refrigerated my dough. It makes the rolling process so much easier. But I did not roll my dough in sugar. I knew I wanted to frost these cookies instead. Ginger and cinnamon are such flavor companions to maple syrup, I felt it would be the perfect addition to my frosting. I made a very simple frosting with mascarpone cheese, a little cream cheese, powdered sugar and real maple syrup (please use the good stuff; you deserve it). I love using mascarpone. It is velvety and so creamy. I often use it in place of cream cheese in my sweet recipes. In fact I used mascarpone cheese in the frosting of these cinnamon rolls. The sweet maple mascarpone frosting and the peppery molasses cookies are irresistible. They are festive, fun and will fill your home with the scent of Christmas!
For the cookies
- 1 1/2 cup shortening
- 2 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup molasses
- 2 eggs
- 4 cups flour
- 4 teaspoons baking soda
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 3/4 cup sugar
For the frosting
- 8 oz mascarpone cheese, softened
- 4 oz cream cheese, softened
- 4 tablespoon maple syrup
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- In a bowl, cream together shortening and sugar. Beat in molasses and eggs until combined.
- In a bowl, combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, ginger and cloves. Carefully add dry ingredients to shortening mixture. Stir until incorporated. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until easy to handle.
- Preheat oven to 375.
- Roll dough into 1 inch balls and roll in sugar that has been placed in a bowl. Bake for 8-10 minutes. or until edges are set.
- Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 2 minutes before removing to a cooking rack. Cool completely before frosting.
- Combine the cheeses in a mixing bowl and beat until creamy. Stir in maple syrup and add powdered sugar one cup at at time.
- Spread frosting over cooled cookies
Nutrition InformationYield 72 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 148Total Fat 6gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 3gCholesterol 13mgSodium 121mgCarbohydrates 22gFiber 0gSugar 16gProtein 1g