Chewy Molasses Ginger Cookies

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups packed brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
4 eggs (I will try this with only 3 next time)
1 cup unsulfured molasses
1 teaspoon vanilla
zest of one orange (optional)

5 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
1 ½ teaspoons allspice
¼ teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon salt

Sugar to roll the cookies in, preferably large-grained turbinado sugar (about a cup)

Oven 325.  In large bowl, cream together butter and sugars.  Add eggs, stirring until blended.  Add molasses, vanilla, and orange zest.

In medium bowl, sift together flour, salt, baking soda, and spices.  Add to wet ingredients.

Chill dough for at least an hour or overnight.

Form dough into 1 ½” balls with your hands (or, you know, a melon scooper or something if you’re fussy).  Roll the balls of dough in sugar – preferably coarse-grained sugar such as turbinado.

Bake for 14-18 minutes on parchment paper or silpat-lined baking sheet until just barely set in middle.
Makes 3-4 dozen.