Recipe: Pumpkin Pie Cookies

Mrs. Fields Secrets Pumpkin Pie Cookies
I love pumpkin pie and I love cookies, so this pumpkin pie cookie is the perfect hybrid for the season. Flakey, sugary pie crust enveloping velvety pumpkin pie filling—it’s a lovely little treat to make and share. Prepare these for Halloween with jack-o-lantern faces, or as pumpkins for Thanksgiving, or any other way you like.

Pumpkin Pie Cookies

1 batch of perfect pie crust (or a store bought crust)
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1/4 packed brown sugar
1 egg yolk

1/8 cup sugar
1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon water

Directions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a mixing bowl, combine the pumpkin and spices. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg yolk, cream and sugar together. Add the egg mixture to the pumpkin mixture and combine thoroughly. On a floured surface, roll out pie crust to 1/4 inch thickness. Use a pumpkin shaped cookie cutter and cut individual shapes. You’ll need two for each cookie. Use a sharp paring knife to cut vents or shapes into half of the pumpkin shapes. Place solid pumpkin shapes on a prepared cookie sheet. In a small bowl, whisk an egg yolk with water to create an egg wash. Brush some of the egg wash around the perimeter of the base of the solid  pumpkins. Place a heaping tablespoon of pumpkin filling in the center of the pumpkin shape. Place the vented top crust of the cookie on top, matching up the edges. Seal the two crusts together with a little bit of pressure around the perimeter. Brush a thin layer of egg wash over the entire surface of the top crust and sprinkle the entire top liberally with sugar. Bake for 10-13 minutes, or until edges are golden brown and top crust is bubbly. Makes 8-12 cookies, depending on the size of your cookie cutter.

HINT: Wouldn’t these be ideal as Thanksgiving placeholders? You could carve each person’s initials into each cookie!

Recipe: Pumpkin Seed Trail Mix

MF Trail Mix
Trick-or-treating requires a lot of energy, so I suggest you prepare for Halloween night with this unbelievably delicious trail mix. It’s sweet and savory, filled with all kinds of good-for-you ingredients that will give you sustained energy for hours. However, I’m warning you that this mix is dangerously addictive. Please don’t ask me how much I’ve eaten today. It’s shameful. You should make some today. And then invite me over, because I’m almost out.

Pumpkin Seed Trail Mix

1 cup cleaned, roasted pumpkin seeds
3/4 cup raw sunflower seeds
1 cup slivered almonds
5 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 cup dried cranberries or cherries
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
coarse salt

Directions
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. In a large mixing bowl combine pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, almonds, and syrup. Stir until everything is well coated with syrup. Pour half of the mixture onto a prepared cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or silicone mats. Sprinkle evenly with a pinch of coarse salt. Bake for 20 minutes or until almonds become toasty brown, stirring once or twice to ensure even cooking. Remove and bake the remaining mix. Once cooled, break mixture up into small clusters and transfer them to a mixing bowl before adding dried fruit and white chocolate chips. Store in an air-tight container.

Recipe: Waffle Spice Cookies

MF Pumpkin Waffle Cookies

I love today’s recipe because it’s unique, delicious, versatile, and perfect for a snack or a dressed up dessert. Serve these waffle cookies hot, cooled, plain, or topped with ice cream—you really can’t go wrong because these sweet, cake-y cookies are so right!

Waffle Spice Cookies

1 box spice cake mix
1 cup water
1/2 cup melted butter, plus an additional 4 tablespoons reserved for waffle iron
3 eggs

For Garnish
1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

Directions
Preheat a Belgian waffle iron to medium high heat. Combine cake mix, water, eggs, and melted butter together. Brush hot waffle iron with reserved butter. Pour 1/3 cup of batter and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until cookies have nice crispiness and variations in color. Remove to a cooling rack and sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. Serve plain or topped with ice cream.

HINT: Create pumpkin spice waffle cookies by adding 1/2 cup pureed pumpkin to batter and cook an additional 60-90 seconds.

Recipe: Pumpkin Brownies with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

MF Pumpkin Brownies

Like clockwork, every year when the cool autumn air hits my windows for the first time, I want to bake with pumpkin. I crave it. I dream about it. I come dangerously close to pumpkin overdose. The problem is, there are just too many fabulous pumpkin recipes out there, and I feel an obligation to try them all! Want to join me? Start with these decadent brownies. And don’t even think about skipping the frosting. You’ll want to eat it with a spoon.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Brownies

1/2 cup pureed pumpkin
1 egg plus 2 egg whites
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon all spice
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup brown sugar, packed
1 cup chocolate chips (I recommend the miniature version)

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9 x 9 baking pan with parchment paper or spray with baking spray. In a large mixing bowl, combine pumpkin, eggs, and oil until smooth. In a separate bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients, including the sugar. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture until batter is thick and evenly combined. Stir in chocolate chips. Pour batter into the baking dish and spread it evenly before baking for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out mostly clean. Remove and cool completely before frosting.

HINT: For thinner brownies, use a 9 x 13 pan and cook for only 15 minutes.

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter (one stick), softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
2 – 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Directions
In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter, cinnamon, and nutmeg together until creamy and smooth. On low speed, slowly add the sugar until you reach the desired consistency.  Spread or pipe onto cooled pumpkin brownies.

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