1/2 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1 cup dark molasses
1/2 cup water
4 cups Gold Medal flour (if using self-rising flour, omit salt and baking soda)
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. cloves
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. allspice

Mix thoroughly shortening and sugar. Blend in remaining ingredients. Cover dough; chill 3 hours.

Heat oven to 375F. Roll dough 1/4" thick on lightly floured cloth-covered board. Cut into 3" circles. Sprinkle with sugar; place on well-greased baking sheet. Bake 10 to 12 minutes. Cool cookies on baking sheet 2 minutes; remove to wire rack.

3 1/2 dozen cookies