Recently Sheri loaned me a copy of Deborah Krasner’s Good Meat. I keep joking with her that I may never give it back, because it provides loads of inspiring recipes and has been expanding my knowledge of how to cook grass-fed meats.
Good Meat is an excellent reference to have on your shelf if you are new to grass-fed meat, or have been in the game for awhile already. With beautiful photography by Marcus Nilsson, and over 200 recipes written in a friendly, approachable style, you’ll enjoy this book for years to come.
(Nope – this is not a paid endorsement. Just loved it so much that I thought you might, too.)
Here’s Krasner’s recipe for Molasses Cookies with Crunch and Snap, which contain my personal favorite secret ingredient. I’d also highly recommend the Popcorn with Bacon Fat, Bacon, and Maple Syrup…but you’ll have to check out the book for that one!
Molasses Cookies with Crunch and Snap
From Deborah Krasner’s Good Meat (page 254)
Makes 5 dozen cookies
1 ¼ cups rendered pastured pork lard, at room temperature (secret ingredient!)
3 cups sugar
½ cup molasses
3 ¾ to 4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
¼ baking soda
½ teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons ground ginger
1 tablespoon ground cloves
1 tablespoon ground nutmeg
Cream the lard and 2 cups of the sugar together in the bowl of an electric mixer until the mixture is fluffy. Add the eggs and molasses and beat well.
In another bowl, mix together the 3 ¾ cups flour, the baking soda, salt, and spices, using a whisk to aerate them (or a sifter, if you prefer). Thorough mixing is very important here; otherwise, some of the cookies may have the unpleasant taste of baking soda.
Add the dry ingredients to the molasses mixture, beating until the dough is well blended. If it seems wet, gradually add another ¼ cup of flour. If it is stiff and cracks when you try to form a ball with a pinch of dough, beat in water by the ¼ teaspoon full to slightly dampen it. When the dough is pliable, scrape it into a refrigerator container, or roll into a log and double-wrap it well with plastic wrap or waxed paper. Refrigerate overnight.
When you are ready to bake, heat the oven to 375 degrees and put a rack in the center. Line a couple of baking sheets with parchment or silicone liners. Whirl the remaining 1 cup sugar in a food processor fitted with the steel blade to give it a finer texture, and pour it into a shallow bowl.
Roll the dough into 1-inch balls, dip tops into the sugar, and put the dough balls on the cookie sheets 2 inches apart, sugar side up. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until the cookies are fragrant, soft in the middle, and have a fine, crackled crust on top. Remove the cookies with the paper or liner immediately to cooling racks or the counter. When cool enough to handle, remove them from the paper and store in them a closed container.
Do you use lard in any unexpected ways in recipes?