3/4 c. shortening
1 c. sugar plus more for coating the cookies
1/4 c. dark molasses
2 t. baking soda
1 t. ground cloves
1 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. ground ginger
1/4 t. salt
2 c. flour
In a large bowl in the microwave, melt the shortening. Add 1 cup of the sugar and the molasses and stir to blend (don’t worry if it doesn’t blend completely). Let cool.
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, add the baking soda, cloves, cinnamon, ginger, salt, and flour and mix well.
Add the egg to the cooled molasses mixture and blend well. Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix well to form a stiff dough. Shape the dough into a ball, cover with wax paper, and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least two hours.
Preheat the oven to 375º. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Form the dough into 1" balls by rolling it between the palms of your hands. Roll the ball in the sugar until it is thoroughly coated. Place the dough balls on the prepared cookie sheets.
Bake for 8 minutes for a softer, chewy cookie or 10 minutes for a crispier one (more ginger-snap-ish). They won't really look done at 8 minutes, but they'll set up once they sit for a bit.
Makes about four dozen, really tasty cookies. Chuck and I prefer these when they're softer, but you can decide which you like better. (Of course, they make about 6 dozen erin-sized cookies.)