I realized these were wine inspired cookies when I was using the same delicious words to describe them that I use to illustrate my favorite wines.
Bold dark fruit. Smoky flavors layered with spice. Deep richness that lingers on the palate. Natural sweetness in the 'fresh from the farm' berries. Rustic mouth feel with the seeds giving the jam a lot of chew. All nestled into the well of a soft cookie!
And how fun they were to share at wine tastings
They even traveled to Cullipher's Farm, the wonderful people that grew and harvested these amazing blackberries!
Most commercial jam/jelly is too sugar laden for me, with more syrup than fruit. So I prefer to make my own with just a little sugar.
This little gem is the star in my blackberry jam. And oh how I'll miss you.
Cullipher's Market has ruined me for ever being able to enjoy a store bought blackberry. There is no comparison. There's were the sweetest and largest berries I've ever had, even from other local crops.
I'd pass by the frig and grab some for a snack or spoon some coconut cream Greek yogurt, walnuts, and Kashi cereal over top. A breakfast my African Grey parrot and I both indulge in. One berry at a time, he does his part :)
Of course I could always go with the excuse that the blackberry moonshine needed to be used;) Not only is the shine blended into the jam but it really makes its presence felt in the drizzle. Fruity and just a touch of sweet to offset the tangy jam and spicy cookie!
Sugar does help to preserve the jam and because I'm using less than normal it will not last as long. Keep it for only about 1 week in the refrigerator and approximately 1 month in the freezer.
The cookies freeze well but not with the jam. It oozes into the crevices, which is delicious but once they thaw out it makes the cookies soft and they fall apart. So make the cookies and jam ahead of time but combine them right before serving them. Leftovers can be stored in the frig but again, they will soften. They're so scrumptious though you probably won't have any left :)
Ingredients For Blackberry Jam
3 cups fresh blackberries
3/4 cup blackberry moonshine
1/2 cup water
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup fresh cinnamon basil (whole leaves)
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons water
Ingredients For Molasses Cookies
2 1/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
3/4 cup butter, softened (1/4 cup salted and 1/2 cup unsalted)
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup molasses (not blackstrap)
1 teaspoon vanilla
Turbinado sugar to roll each cookie in
Ingredients For Drizzle
1 1/4 cup powdered sugar
3 tablespoons blackberry moonshine
Directions For Blackberry Jam
Add all ingredients except cornstarch and the 2 tablespoons of water into a sauce pan. Bring to a boil for 2 to 3 minutes to let the blackberries start to break up. Then turn down to medium or medium low and cook until it starts to thicken, about 30 to 45 minutes. In the last 10 minutes or so, blend cornstarch into water. Stir into jam. It will continue to thicken as it cools. Cool completely before adding to cookies.
If you decide to add more sugar and make your jam sweeter you may not need all or any of the cornstarch mixture.You want it to be thick enough that it won't drip across the cookie.
Directions For Molasses Cookies
Whisk together dry ingredients into a bowl. Set aside.
In a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar for about 3 to 4 minutes, until it's pale and fluffy. Add molasses, egg, and vanilla. Blend together, scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl to make sure it's all incorporated. Gradually add the flour and beat until just incorporated. Chill the dough in the refrigerator for at least 1 to 2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Gather the dough using a medium sized cookie scoop, roll in Turbinado sugar, and place each one about 2 inches apart on the parchment. Bake for about 9 to 10 minutes until they are a light golden brown. They may seem like they aren't done but once they cool they'll be crisp on the outside and chewy in the middle.
As soon as you remove them from the oven while they're still soft, take a 1/2 teaspoon measuring spoon and gently massage a small well into the middle of each cookie. Be careful not to go all the way through. Leave them on the baking sheet for a couple of minutes, then transfer to racks to finish cooling.
Cool completely before adding the jam and drizzle. Makes 28 cookies. If you have extra jam it's delicious on biscuits, English muffins, and ice cream :)
Directions For Drizzle
Whisk sugar and moonshine together into a drizzling consistency. Add more of either ingredient to thin or thicken as needed.
Many different fruits would play beautifully with a molasses cookie.
Here's a summer peach version...same cookie, peach moonshine jam with cardamom and vanilla, YUM :)
A spicy, floral, fruity combination that you can still enjoy with fresh peaches!
Run to the store...it's worth it!
Ingredients For Peach Moonshine Jam
2 cups fresh peaches, diced small
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup peach moonshine
1/2 cup water
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons water
Directions For Peach Moonshine Jam
Add all ingredients into a sauce pan except cornstarch and the 2 tablespoons of water. Bring to a boil for 2 or 3 minutes. Then turn down to medium or medium low until thickened, About 20 to 30 minutes. In the last 10 minutes or so, blend the cornstarch and water together. Stir into peach mixture and cook until it's thick enough to spoon into cookies without spilling over. It will continue to thicken as it cools. Cool completely before adding to cookies.
Already brainstorming a fall version of these fabulous cookies. What so you think would be a delectable holiday filling alongside molasses and ginger? Please share your ideas or experiments in the comments below!