Molasses Wagon Wheels

 I always expect recipes from the “Farm Journal Homemade Cookies " cookbook to work – the same as any Farm Journal Cook Book.  These were no exception…a nice, flavorful, crunchy molasses cookie.  I let the dough set overnight in the refrigerator, and it was very easy to roll out and handle.   There is no egg in this recipe, not a mistake.
I made the icing as directed, and used my throw-away piping bag with a small-holed tip to pipe on the icing…I should have made a tad more.  If you have kids around, whatever age, they won’t last long.
These make you want to have some cowboy-design platters for serving!
                          Molasses Wagon Wheels
     1/2           Cup  Shortening
  1                Cup  Sugar
  1                Cup  Molasses -- dark
     1/2           Cup  Water
  4               Cups  Sifted All Purpose Flour
  1           Teaspoon  Baking Soda
  1 1/2      Teaspoons  Salt
  1 1/2      Teaspoons  Ground Ginger
     1/2      Teaspoon  Ground Cloves
     1/4      Teaspoon  Ground Nutmeg
     1/4      Teaspoon  Ground Allspice
     1/4           Cup  Sugar -- for topping
     1/2           Cup  Raisins -- about 66
  1                Cup  Powdered Sugar
     1/4      Teaspoon  Salt
     1/2      Teaspoon  Vanilla Extract
  1         Tablespoon  Light Cream
Cream shortening and 1 cup sugar until light and fluffy.  Beat in molasses and water to mix thoroughly.
Stir together flour, soda, 1 1/2 teaspoon salt and spices; stir into creamed mixture.  Chill several hours or overnight.
Roll dough to 1/4" thick.  Cut with a 3" round cutter or glass.  Sprinkle tops with sugar.  Place 1/4 to 1/2" apart on greased baking sheet. Press 3 raisins into center of each dough circle.
Bake at 350° for 12 minutes, until almost no imprint remains when toughed lightly with finger.  Remove from oven, but leave on baking sheet a few minutes before transferring to cooling racks.

Blend frosting ingredients; when cookies are cool, make spokes of a wheel with icing piped on, and outline raisin center to simulate a wheel's hub.
22-24 cookies.
2011 Cost:   $3.14 or 15¢ each
Per Serving: 234 Calories; 5g Fat (19.1% calories from fat); 2g Protein; 46g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; trace Cholesterol; 234mg Sodium.  Exchanges: 1 Grain(Starch); 0 Fruit; 1 Fat; 2 Other Carbohydrates.

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