Want to make your home smell good and create a taste treat at the same time? Silver Dollar City has a simple solution – bake ginger cookies.
“Our ginger cookies are very popular,” says food manager Sam Hedrick. “They smell so good when they are baking that you can hardly wait to have one. They are more poplar than ever during the holidays.”
The ginger cookies were originally created at Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri, by the Joe Carson family, whose members worked at the park over the years. “Many of our recipes have been passed down for generations,” Hedrick says.
Because Silver Dollar City got so many requests for its old-timey recipes and because it seemed like a wonderful activity for park visitors, the 1880s theme park started a new Culinary & Craft School. Classes are presented within a 3,000-square -foot timber frame house at the park. Styled as a turn-of-the-century farmhouse, the building is a comfortable blend of American heritage, including a lovely kitchen where classes take place.
Stunning furnishings for the building were made by the park’s expert craftsmen, such as the copper countertops and wall backsplash, carved mantle and pottery accents. Look for other handmade touches, including as the carved wood front doors with wrought iron overlays, hammered copper tiles framing the fireplace, a six-foot chandelier made with nearly 400 amber blown glass spheres, and handmade wooden furniture like a vintage style recipe chest.
As master craftsman of culinary arts at Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri, Debbie Dance Uhrig shares recipes and tips on making nutritious, delicious and inexpensive dishes.
“I think the school is popular because people have an interest in cooking and this gives them something different to do when the come to Silver Dollar City,” Uhrig says.
A teacher for more than 20 years, Uhrig is also a cookbook author and shares recipes in her classes. Along with learning how to make a dish, students get to taste the tasty results. At about $12 a class, plus park admission, cooking topics include Church Supper, Savory Skillet, Southern Desserts, Canning 101 and the Quest to Cook For Less.
At about $12 a class, plus park admission, cooking topics change along with the seasons. Classes are offered March through December. Silver Dollar City also carries its own cookbooks with regional and park favorite recipes.
For more information: Contact Silver Dollar City (800) 475-9370, www.silverdollarcity.com or the Branson Convention & Visitors Bureau at (877) BRANSON, www.explorebranson.com
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
½ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon salt
¾ cup shortening
1 cup sugar plus ¼ cup
2 tablespoons molasses
1 large egg
In a mixing bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, spices and salt. In a second mixing bowl, cream shortening and 1 cup of sugar until fluffy. Add molasses and egg. Beat mixture for one minute. Add flour mixture and mix on low speed until combined. Shape the dough into 1 ½ inch balls and place 3 inches apart on a greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until light brown on bottom. Cool on rack and serve. Makes about 20 cookies.