Stage Plank cookies
Can someone tell me what they are, where they originate, and are they indigenous to the south. I am not sure I have even spelled it right. I am curious to its origin. My understanding is it a spice, gingery cookie with frosting, pink or white. Where are they found?
Stage planks (one name for a firm, gingerbread cookie more cakey than a gingersnap) are about 3" wide, 6-8" long, usually sold individually wrapped at gas stations, convenience stores, etc. In the family of old-fashioned ginger slabs, I much prefer the ginger planks from Lejeune's bakery in Jeanerette, distributed in a fairly small area of SE LA.
There's a recipe for Estomac Mulatre aka Stage Planks or Gingerbread Without Butter or Eggs in the Picayune Creole Cookbook first published in 1901.
1 cup molasses
1 cup sour milk
1 T ground ginger
8 T shortening
3 cups flour
1 t baking soda
The directions briefly: melt the molasses, shortening and ginger together and blend well. When thoroughly melted and warmed, beat for 10 minutes. Dissolve the soda in 1 T boiling water and add to the molasses mix. Then add just enough of the sifted flour to make a stiff batter, beating thoroughly and vigorously. Pour into several greased shallow pans and bake for ten minutes in a quick oven. Whatever that means.
There was no recipe given for an icing or directions for adding one.
When I was a child in New Orleans, stage planks were available in grocery stores as packaged cookies. They were about the size of playing cards and had pink and white icing, assorted in the package. The icing was like a royal icing. I loved those cookies.