Recipe: Mini Molasses Cookies with Lemon Filling

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Sandwich cookies have a nearly irresistible appeal for me - I really can't pass up tiny cookies with something gooey in the middle. Why is that, I wonder? Childhood nostalgia? Two cookies for the price of one?

This sandwich cookie suits that craving perfectly. Spicy molasses cookies are a classic, especially in the winter. These are soft, light, and not as greasy as some recipes. Their dark spice is brightened by a tart lemon filling that softens the sandwiches into sunny, chewy, one-bite treats.

Try not to overbake these cookies. Even if you do, however, just slather on the lemon filling and put the sandwiches in a covered container in the fridge overnight. They will soften right up, and they'll continue to get better over the next few days.

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Mini Molasses Cookies
makes about 3 dozen

2/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup molasses
1 egg
2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
White sugar, for rolling
1 batch of Lemon Filling

Preheat oven to 350°F. In a large bowl vigorously mix the oil, brown sugar, molasses and egg. In a separate bowl mix the flour, baking soda, spices and salt. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the sugar mixture. Beat with a wooden spoon or with an electric mixer. The dough will be very goopy.

Pinch off tiny amounts of dough, about the size of a marble, roll lightly into a ball then roll in sugar. The dough will be sticky and this part may get a little tedious. It helps to have your hands very dry and lightly dusted with flour.

Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes. Take them out just as they beginning to brown on the bottom. Let them cool on the baking sheets for a few minutes to firm up before removing.

When the cookies are cool, sandwich them with teaspoon dollops of the Lemon Filling. Put in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator overnight. As they sit in the fridge overnight or even for a couple days they will soften with the filling into gooey lemon-molasses sandwiches.

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Faith is the executive editor of The Kitchn and the author of three cookbooks. They include Bakeless Sweets (Spring 2013) as well as The Kitchn's first cookbook, which will be published in Fall 2014. She lives in Columbus, Ohio with her husband Mike.

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