2 cups light brown sugar
1 tbsp. each of cinnamon and ground ginger
1/2 tsp. each of allspice and salt
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 cup cocoa
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 cup boiling water
1 cup butter
1/2 cup molasses
4 1/2 cups flour
Measure sugar, spices, cocoa and baking soad into a very large bowl. Add boiling water and stir until sugar is dissolved and spices are evenly distributed. Then, stir in butter until melted. Stir in molasses.
Gradually stir in about 3 1/2 cups flour. Then, stir in remaining flour, about 1/4 cup at a time. When dough becomes too stiff to stir, flour your hands and sprinkle flour over dough. Knead in remaining flour until dough is firm enough for rolling out. Dough can be rolled right away, or wrapped in plastic wrap and refrigerated for several weeks. Or you may freeze it if you wish.
Rolling and Cutting:
Bring dough to room temperature. Preheat oven to 300° F. Cut off 2 cups of dough and place on a lightly floured board. Roll out dough to 1/4" thickness.
Use your favourite cookie cutters and cut out dough. Place cookie cutouts on an ungreased baking sheet.
Bake gingerbreads in centre of preheated 300° F. oven for 10 to 15 minutes or until they feel firm to the touch. Remove baking sheet from oven. Leave cookies on sheet for 5 to 10 minutes before removing to a rack to cool completely.
When cool, you may decorate them with royal icing. Store cookies in a tightly covered container in a cool place or refrigerate or freeze. Enjoy!