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Hermit cookies take two forms: drop and bar. This version is the bar style and I just love them. Chewy, spicy, filled with dried fruit, they are a favorite to make as fall and winter holidays approach, but I’ll never turn down a hermit any time of the year. These are great to make ahead for your cookie trays and freeze very well.
Old-fashioned Hermit Bar CookiesCourse: DessertCuisine: Coal Region, Pa. DutchDifficulty: Intermediate
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup brown sugar (light or dark)
1/4 cup unsulphured baking molasses
1 large egg
2/3 cup raisins (or currants, or dried cranberries, small diced candied fruit and/or nuts – your choice!)
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, spices, and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl or in the bowl of a standing mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the molasses and egg and continue to beat, scraping the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula if necessary. Gradually add the flour and spices mixture until just combined.
- Stir in the raisins.
- Chill the dough for 30 minutes.
- While the dough chills, preheat the oven to 375F and line a large baking sheet with parchment.
- Once dough is chilled, shape it into a ball and cut in half. Shape each half into a log 12 inches long and arrange on the prepared baking sheet, leaving at least 3 inches between the logs. Press down lightly on the tops of the logs with your fingertips to give them a slightly squared-off shape.
- Bake on the center rack for 15 minutes, or until the edges are just barely crisp.
- Remove from the oven to cool. Cut to desired lengths.