Ginger Spice Cookies with Cinnamon Oat Crunch & Paris on my mind

by meike peters

Ginger Spice Cookies with Cinnamon Oat Crunch

We are all one, we may all be different, unique individuals, but still, we are all one.

We were out at a concert and got home late on Friday night, we saw the news on TV and were shocked. Paris had been attacked, but not only this city, everybody who believes in freedom, tolerance and compassion was attacked that night. This wasn’t against a state or against a religious group, it was an attack against individual lives, to make us feel scared, to spread hatred and fear amongst each other, everywhere in the world. We felt shaken on Saturday, we were sad and confused, not knowing where all this would lead to. Why does humankind have to be like this, why can’t we learn from our history? We know all this violence won’t lead anywhere, it will only spread the seeds for even more pain and suffering, and if we continue following this sickening road, nothing will ever change.

Yesterday, we were invited to dinner, to my aunt and uncle’s traditional St. Martin’s celebration feast. We took our bikes and rode through the city, down the Unter den Linden boulevard until we got to the Brandenburg Gate at the Pariser Platz, lit up in blue, white and red, in the colours of le tricolore. We wanted to pass the French embassy which is right there but we couldn’t, we had to stop and get off our bikes, to take a minute for ourselves. Hundreds of candles, flowers and letters all over the pavement, people standing and sitting on the floor, in silence. We didn’t know each other but it’s easier to stand the pain when you can share it. We looked into each other’s eyes, coming from different countries, not sharing the same language, lives and beliefs, but this doesn’t matter, in this moment we all cried and were one.

Later on, when we sat at the dining table together with our family and friends after enjoying a wonderful meal cooked by my aunt Ursula and my uncle Uwe, I felt a little more peaceful again – and safe. We discussed and shared our opinions, some of them were close, others were further apart, but still, we sat at the table together, looked into each other’s eyes and used words to express our feelings, worries and beliefs. Eight individual people, with individual opinions, knowing that we can’t escape the fact that we are all different yet still one.

When we rode home, we stopped in front of the French embassy again and I read a handwritten note – Nous sommes unis. This gives me hope.

There was a lot of silence in the past couple days, we were speechless, no words to express what we felt but it wasn’t necessary either. My boyfriend and I felt the need to sit down together more often than usual, we drank tea and ate cookies. My ginger cookies were made for happier times, but still, they made us feel good, warm and cozy, exactly what we needed.

Ginger Spice Cookies with Cinnamon Oat Crunch


Ginger Spice Cookies with Cinnamon Oat Crunch

Ginger Spice Cookies with Cinnamon Oat Crunch

Makes about 20 cookies

For the cookie dough

plain flour 355g / 2 3/4 cups
baking soda 1 teaspoon
fine sea salt 1/2 teaspoon
cloves, ground in a mortar, 1 teaspoon
ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon
allspice, ground in a mortar, 1/8 teaspoon
butter, soft, 130g / 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon
granulated sugar 175g / 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons
fresh ginger, grated, 1 1/2 tablespoons
cane syrup or molasses 80g / 4 tablespoons
honey 60g / 3 tablespoons
organic egg 1

For the oat crunch

rolled oats 90g / 1 cup
butter, soft, cut into small pieces, 60g / 4 tablespoons
granulated sugar 100g / 1/2 cup
ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon

For the cookie dough, combine the flour, baking soda, salt, cloves, cinnamon, and all spice in a large bowl.

In a second large bowl, cream the butter, sugar, and ginger with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add the syrup, honey, and egg and mix well. Add the flour mixture to the bowl and mix with the dough hooks of an electric mixer until just combined. Scrape the dough together, leave it in the bowl, and put it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes (an hour would be even better).

Preheat the oven to 180°C / 355°F (preferably convection setting). Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

For the oat crunch, mix the oats, butter, sugar, and cinnamon in a medium bowl and mix with the dough hooks of an electric mixer until crumbly.

Form a spoonful of the cookie dough into a 4-cm / 1 1/2-inch ball. Continue with the remaining dough and spread the balls on the lined baking sheets, leaving enough space, about 5-cm / 2-inch, in between them, they will rise. Lightly flatten the balls with the bottom of a small espresso cup (dip the bottom in water before you touch the dough) and scoop a generous amount of oat crunch on top (see the picture below). Bake in the oven for about 13-15 minutes, the tops of the cookies should be slightly soft when you touch them, don’t overcook them or they will get hard. Let them cool completely.

You can store the cookies in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

Ginger Spice Cookies with Cinnamon Oat Crunch


Ginger Spice Cookies with Cinnamon Oat Crunch


Ginger Spice Cookies with Cinnamon Oat Crunch


Ginger Spice Cookies with Cinnamon Oat Crunch