Hello, Good News! Welcome to another article where we share with you some of the best recipes for the holiday season. Today, we are going to talk about how to make nauvoo gingerbread cookies, a traditional treat that has a rich history and a wonderful flavor.
Nauvoo gingerbread cookies are named after the city of Nauvoo, Illinois, where they were first made by the early members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) in the 1840s. The cookies are flavored with ginger, cloves, nutmeg, and molasses, and have a soft and chewy texture. They are often cut into shapes of people, animals, or houses, and decorated with icing and candy.
Why You Should Try Nauvoo Gingerbread Cookies
If you are looking for a unique and tasty cookie recipe for your holiday baking, nauvoo gingerbread cookies are a great choice. Here are some of the reasons why you should try them:
They have a rich history
Nauvoo gingerbread cookies are more than just a dessert. They are also a way to connect with the past and learn about the history of Nauvoo and the LDS church. Nauvoo was founded by Joseph Smith, the founder of the LDS church, in 1839. It became a thriving city with over 12,000 inhabitants, many of whom were converts from Europe. The city was known for its beautiful buildings, such as the Nauvoo Temple and the Nauvoo Mansion House. The residents also practiced various crafts and skills, such as blacksmithing, pottery, printing, and baking.
One of the popular attractions in Nauvoo was the Scovil Bakery, where visitors could get free samples of gingerbread cookies. The bakery was run by William Scovil and his wife Mary Ann, who were converts from England. They used a recipe that Mary Ann had brought with her from her homeland. The recipe was simple but delicious, using ingredients that were readily available in Nauvoo. The cookies were baked in a large brick oven that could hold up to 200 cookies at a time. The Scovils also sold other baked goods, such as bread, pies, cakes, and crackers.
They have a wonderful flavor
Nauvoo gingerbread cookies are not your ordinary gingerbread cookies. They have a distinctive flavor that comes from the combination of spices and molasses. The spices give the cookies a warm and aromatic taste, while the molasses adds sweetness and moisture. The cookies also have a hint of saltiness that balances out the sweetness. The result is a cookie that is soft, chewy, and full of flavor.
The best part about nauvoo gingerbread cookies is that you can customize them according to your preferences. You can adjust the amount of spices to make them more or less spicy. You can also cut them into different shapes and sizes to make them more fun and festive. You can even decorate them with icing and candy to make them more colorful and attractive.
They have health benefits
Another reason to try nauvoo gingerbread cookies is that they have some health benefits as well. Gingerbread cookies are made with whole wheat flour, which is rich in fiber and nutrients. Fiber helps with digestion and lowers cholesterol levels. Whole wheat flour also contains vitamins B and E, which support the immune system and the nervous system.
Gingerbread cookies also contain ginger, which is a powerful spice that has many health benefits. Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties that can help with pain relief and reduce swelling. Ginger also has anti-nausea effects that can help with motion sickness and morning sickness. Ginger can also boost metabolism and blood circulation, which can help with weight loss and energy levels.
How to Make Nauvoo Gingerbread Cookies: A Step-by-Step Guide
Now that you know why you should try nauvoo gingerbread cookies, let’s get into how to make them. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to make nauvoo gingerbread cookies from scratch:
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup molasses
- 3/4 cup oil or lard
- 1/2 cup hot water
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 heaping teaspoon ginger
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 4 cups white flour
- In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, molasses, and oil. Add the hot water, measuring it in the same cup as the molasses so that you get all the molasses out of the cup. Add the eggs and whisk well.
- In a medium bowl, sift together the baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, salt, and whole wheat flour. Gradually stir this mixture into the wet ingredients until well combined.
- Add the white flour, one cup at a time, and knead the dough until smooth and stiff. You may need more or less flour depending on the humidity and the type of flour you use.
- Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour or up to overnight. This will help the dough to firm up and develop more flavor.
- When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C) and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a thickness of about 1/4 inch. Cut out cookies with your desired cookie cutters and place them on the prepared baking sheets, leaving some space between them.
- Bake for 10 minutes or until the cookies are lightly browned around the edges. Let them cool slightly on the baking sheets before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Decorate the cookies with icing and candy as you wish. Enjoy!
A Table Breakdown of Nauvoo Gingerbread Cookies
To give you a better idea of what nauvoo gingerbread cookies are like, here is a table breakdown of their characteristics:
| Category | Description |
| — | — |
| Origin | Nauvoo, Illinois |
| History | Made by early members of the LDS church in the 1840s |
| Flavor | Spicy, sweet, and salty |
| Texture | Soft and chewy |
| Shape | Various shapes, such as people, animals, or houses |
| Decoration | Icing and candy |
| Storage | Airtight container at room temperature or in the refrigerator |
| Shelf life | Three to four weeks |
| Health benefits | Fiber, vitamins B and E, ginger |
FAQs About Nauvoo Gingerbread Cookies
Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about nauvoo gingerbread cookies:
Nauvoo gingerbread cookies are different from regular gingerbread cookies in several ways. First, nauvoo gingerbread cookies use both whole wheat flour and white flour, while regular gingerbread cookies usually use only white flour. Second, nauvoo gingerbread cookies use oil or lard as the fat source, while regular gingerbread cookies usually use butter or margarine. Third, nauvoo gingerbread cookies have a higher ratio of molasses to sugar than regular gingerbread cookies, which makes them darker and sweeter. Fourth, nauvoo gingerbread cookies have a softer and chewier texture than regular gingerbread cookies, which are often crispier and harder.
Yes, you can freeze nauvoo gingerbread cookie dough for up to three months. To do this, wrap the dough tightly in plastic wrap and then place it in a freezer bag. Label and date the bag and store it in the freezer. When you are ready to bake, thaw the dough in the refrigerator overnight and then proceed with rolling and cutting as usual.
Yes, you can make vegan nauvoo gingerbread cookies by making some simple substitutions. Instead of eggs, you can use flax eggs (one tablespoon of ground flaxseed mixed with three tablespoons of water per egg) or applesauce (1/4 cup per egg). Instead of oil or lard, you can use vegan butter or coconut oil. Instead of molasses, you can use maple syrup or agave nectar. The rest of the ingredients are already vegan-friendly.
Yes, you can make gluten-free nauvoo gingerbread cookies by using gluten-free flours instead of wheat flours. You can use a gluten-free all-purpose flour blend or a combination of gluten-free flours such as almond flour, oat flour, rice flour, or sorghum flour. You may need to adjust the amount of liquid or add some xanthan gum to help with binding and structure.
If you like your nauvoo gingerbread cookies more spicy, you can increase the amount of ginger, cinnamon, and cloves in the recipe. You can also add some other spices, such as nutmeg, allspice, cardamom, or black pepper. Be careful not to add too much, though, as you don’t want to overpower the other flavors.
If you find your nauvoo gingerbread cookies too dry or crumbly, you can make them more moist by adding some extra liquid or fat to the dough. You can use more water, oil, molasses, or even milk or yogurt. You can also add some applesauce or mashed banana to the dough, which will add moisture and sweetness. Another tip is to underbake the cookies slightly, as they will continue to cook on the baking sheet after you take them out of the oven.
If you prefer your nauvoo gingerbread cookies more crispy, you can make them thinner and bake them longer. You can also reduce the amount of oil or lard in the recipe and use more sugar instead. Sugar helps to create a crispier texture by caramelizing in the oven. You can also use brown sugar instead of white sugar, which has more molasses and adds more flavor and crunch.
You can store your nauvoo gingerbread cookies in an airtight container at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to three to four weeks. If you want to keep them longer, you can freeze them in a freezer bag for up to three months. To thaw them, just leave them at room temperature for a few hours or microwave them for a few seconds.
You can decorate your nauvoo gingerbread cookies with icing and candy as you wish. You can use royal icing, which is made with powdered sugar and egg whites, or buttercream icing, which is made with butter and powdered sugar. You can also use store-bought icing tubes or pens for convenience. You can color the icing with food coloring or natural ingredients, such as beet juice or turmeric. You can also use candy sprinkles, chocolate chips, raisins, nuts, or dried fruits to decorate your cookies.
You can make your nauvoo gingerbread cookies vegan by making some simple substitutions. Instead of eggs, you can use flax eggs (one tablespoon of ground flaxseed mixed with three tablespoons of water per egg) or applesauce (1/4 cup per egg). Instead of oil or lard, you can use vegan butter or coconut oil. Instead of molasses, you can use maple syrup or agave nectar. The rest of the ingredients are already vegan-friendly.
We hope you enjoyed this article on how to make nauvoo gingerbread cookies. Nauvoo gingerbread cookies are a delicious and historic treat that you can make for yourself or share with your friends and family. They have a wonderful flavor, a soft and chewy texture, and some health benefits as well. They are also easy to make and customize according to your preferences.
If you liked this article, please check out our other articles on baking and cooking. We have many more recipes and tips for you to try. Thank you for reading and happy baking!