Ginger Sandwich Cookies with Cinnamon Cream Filling

I love ginger cookies and if you recall from a few months ago, I made some pretty awesome ginger snap cookies. I can blame my friend Beth for getting me hooked on these spicy little cookies last spring break. As she has done for the past 20 or so years (since we were about 7), Beth joined us for our Thanksgiving feast. This year she brought these cookies along with some awesome cranberry sauce. The second I took a bite into these amazing cookies I had to know where she got the recipe. I thought they are the perfect Christmas cookie! This is my first post to kick off my holiday baking recipes. I hope you follow me and find some new and old favorites. Even if you have a favorite ginger cookie recipe, give these a try…they are sure to become a holiday tradition. These two-bite sized cookies are perfect for holiday parties or baked goodie boxes. Make these the day before you want to share them with friends and family. The cookies will soften and the flavors will mingle, making them even more irresistable. :)

Ginger Sandwich Cookies with Cinnamon Cream Filling

Yield: about 30 sandwich cookies

Ingredients:

For the Cookies:
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar; more for rolling
1/4 cup molasses
1 large egg, at room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

For Cinnamon Cream Filling:
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
3 cups powdered sugar
4 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 teaspoons cinnamon

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 3 baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and both sugars on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the molasses, egg, and vanilla and continue to beat until incorporated, about 1 minute. Reduce the speed to low, slowly add flour mixture, and mix until just incorporated, about 1 minute. Shape the dough into a disk, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
Place 1/2 cup sugar for rolling in a shallow bowl. Roll a heaping teaspoon of dough into a ball between your palms, roll the ball in the sugar, and then place it on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough, spacing the balls about 2 inches apart. Butter the bottom of a drinking glass and then dip the bottom of the glass in the remaining sugar. Flatten the dough balls slightly with the bottom of the glass, dipping the glass in sugar as necessary to prevent sticking (after every 2 or 3 cookies).
Bake in preheated oven 12 to 14 minutes until the cookies feel dry to the touch and are beginning to firm up (they’ll still feel soft inside). Cool completely on wire rack.
To make the cinnamon cream filling: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the cream cheese and powdered sugar until smooth. Add cinnamon and vanilla extract and beat until combined.
Spread about 1 rounded teaspoonful cinnamon cream filling on flat side of 1 cookie. Top with second cookie, forming a sandwich. Repeat with remaining filling and cookies. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 days.

Source: Darby O'Shea, originally from Fine Cooking