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Posts Tagged ‘Pumpkin’

Verily, it is NOT October 27th but October 26th!
I’m only mildly ashamed that I missed this glorious holiday because I do in fact spend all month — including last night — celebrating pumpkins. Yes, October is a month-long rendezvous with pumpkins, and I’m apt to daydream about and dally with pumpkin smoothies, pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin breads, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin cakes (and pumpkin scones soon on the horizon). Even so, National Pumpkin Day is certainly worthy of its very own special treat!
Cinnamon Shortbread with Caramel Pumpkin Glaze
Shortbread
1 c butter (softened)
1/2 c brown sugar
1 egg yolk
2 c flour (1/2 whole wheat)
1/2 T Saigon cinnamon
1/2 T vanilla extract
Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg yolk, flour, cinnamon, and vanilla, and beat until combined. (At this point, the dough can be shaped into a 1″ log and frozen for up to a week. When ready to bake, cut log into 1/4″ segments.)
Turn the dough out onto a well-floured surface. Divide the dough into two halves for easier handling. Shape the dough into a ball and flatten to 1/4″. Using a cookie cutter, cut out cookies from the dough. Place cookies on well-greased baking sheet or Silpat. Make thumb-print indentations for the caramel pumpkin glaze (see below). Spread glaze into indentations (a bit of overflow is fine). Chill for 30 minutes before baking. Alternatively, shape the dough into a 1″ log as above, chill the dough, then cut into cookie segments.
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F. Bake for 30 minutes until shortbread is lightly bronwed and tender.
Glaze
1/4 c butter
1/4 c sugar
1/2 c cream (can substitute with milk)
1/4 c pumpkin
Melt butter in saucepan on medium heat until browned and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Stir in sugar and continue stirring until well combined and caramelized. Turn heat to low, and add cream and pumpkin. Stir until well combined; the mixture will bubble. Remove from heat, and refrigerate to harden.
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Today was my last day at ISERP, and for the occasion, (in vague remembrance of an office cook-off held last fall), I made curried pumpkin brownies. These weren’t my best, unfortunately — I was hoping they’d be denser, thicker, more like a brownie than like a cake — but nonetheless, the indiscriminate sweet-toothed office-mates scarfed them down with a round of accolades. Goodbye, ISERP, I’ll miss you!

Curried Pumpkin Brownies (adapted from Smitten Kitchen)

8 T butter
6 oz. bittersweet chocolate chips
2 c all-purpose flour (1/2 whole wheat)
1 t baking powder
1/2 t curry powder
1/2 t salt
1 c sugar
4 eggs
1 T vanilla extract
1 1/4 c pumpkin
1/4 c vegetable oil
1 t ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-inch square baking pan or dish. (I used a 7×11 and the brownies were extraordinarily thick.)

Melt chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, stirring occasionally until smooth.

Whisk together flour, baking powder, curry powder, and salt in a large bowl; set aside. Put sugar, eggs, and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; beat until fluffy and well combined, 3 to 5 minutes. Beat in flour mixture.

Pour half of batter (about two cups) into a separate bowl and stir chocolate mixture into it. In other bowl, stir in the pumpkin, oil, and cinnamon. Transfer half of chocolate batter to prepared pan smoothing top with a rubber spatula. Top with half of pumpkin batter. Repeat to make one more chocolate layer and one more pumpkin layer. Work quickly so batters don’t set. With a small spatula or a table knife, gently swirl the two batters to create a marbled effect.

Bake until set, 40 to 45 minutes. Let cool in pan on a wire rack.

24 brownies

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