For the cookies
- 5 1/2 cup flour, plus more for rolling
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 1/2 tablespoons ground ginger
- 1 tablespoons ground cinnamon
- 1 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 1 cup dark brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups unsulfured molasses
For the Royal Icing
- 2 egg whites, room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, salt, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and cardamom.
- In a stand mixer, combine butter and sugar until pale in color. Whisk in eggs one at a time, then add in molasses. Stir in flour mixture gradually.
- Divide into three balls and cover in plastic wrap. Chill for at least one hour.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Roll out one ball of dough onto a lightly floured surface or parchment paper, about 1/4 inch thick. If dough is sticky, incorporate more flour 1/4 cup at a time. Cut cookies with a cookie cutter and place 2-inches apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 12-14 minutes until the cookies are crisp and firm, but do not allow them to darken in color. Let cool on a wire rack before adding icing.
- To make the icing, place egg whites in a bowl. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar. Put powdered sugar in another bowl. Spoon powdered sugar into egg whites 1 tablespoon at a time. Stir — don’t whisk — until thoroughly incorporated. Repeat until icing holds its shape when you run a spoon through it. Icing should not be runny so it is easy to pipe. Add icing to piping bags and use to decorate cookies.