As always, I opted for whole wheat pastry flour rather than regular white flour. I then reduced the sugar by 1/4 cup and substituted ground oatmeal for 1/2 cup of flour - hence the little white flecks in the photo. Finally, I skipped one step altogether; I didn't roll my balls of dough in granulated sugar before baking because it was another easy way to reduce the sugar content.
What I ended up with were perfectly round, slightly soft cookies that tasted as great as they looked, with enough to enjoy now and still stash a few in the freezer. See if you agree:
Makes approximately 48 cookies
1 3/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup oatmeal, ground fine
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/8 cup butter + 3/8 cup olive oil
1/4 cup molasses
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ginger (VOE - we'll add an extra 1/2 teaspoon next time)
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
Melt butter over low stovetop heat or in microwave. Combine oatmeal and flour. In a large mixing bowl, combine about half of the flour/oatmeal mixture, brown sugar, butter, olive oil, molasses, egg, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. Mix together thoroughly and then stir in remaining flour.
Shape dough into 1-inch balls and place two inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets (VOE - the dough will be quite wet as you do this). Bake in a 375-degree oven for 8 to 10 minutes until edges are set. Cool on cookie sheet for 1 minute then transfer cookies to a wire rack or foil and let cool completely. Store with a piece of bread in air-tight container; this will enhance their softness.