Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Tuestorial: Pumpkin-Crazed Snickerdoodles

On Saturday I was driving through West Marin in search for apples and there were all these sad little pumpkins abandoned in pumpkin patch fields. I asked my friend - "So, do they just leave them there to die after Halloween? Think of all the yummy stuff one could make with that!" I believe that's when I became Pumpkin-Crazed...this happens for most people when Starbucks comes out with their seasonal pumpkin spiced latte...but not me... it took seeing abandoned pumpkins to get my mind thinking about how to use them in my baking.

The next day, I made Pumpkin Biscotti. But the recipe I found online only asked for 1/2 a cup of pumpkin...and there I was with another cup to use up because a can of pumpkin is actually a cup and a half. Whoopsie - guess I gotta make more pumpkin treats - oh darn.
I guess I could have put it to good use inside a soup or something - but Pumpkin Snickerdoodles just sounded just a tad-bit more delicious.

Also - with our winter team show coming up - you can make some of these wonderful delights for the table and impress me...since I'll be there volunteering at the baked goods table.

I modified this recipe to make my version healthier, more moist and also more pumpkin-y.

For the cookies:
3¾ cups Red Mill Wheat Flour
1½ tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. Trader Joe's Pumpkin Pie Spice
1 cup unsalted Straus Family Creamery butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated organic cane sugar
½ cup organic (light or dark) brown sugar
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 large egg
2 tsp. Madagascar Vanilla Paste

For the coating:

1 cup organic granulated can sugar
2 1/2 tsp. Trader Joe's Pumpkin Pie Spice

Step one:
Combine wet ingredients... then put in all the dry ones. Usually I skip this step...but this is important here for these cookies since you'll want to make sure they stay fluffy - and this will help.

Step Two:
Chill your dough for an hour in the fridge. Why? Because you want to make sure your butter becomes firm again and your cookies hold their shape during baking. When you are mixing the ingredients together...the butter looses some of it's binding ability. Putting the dough in the fridge will bring the dough back together and make rolling your dough easier later down the line.

Step Three:
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees - line your cookie sheet with a cookie sheet liner OR parchment paper. This is so the sugar coating doesn't stick to the cookie sheet. If you use a cookie sheet liner, not only will you be able to get your cookies off the sheet easily, you will also end up with a perfectly-perfect cookie bottom and your cookies won't dry out as much as they would if they were placed directly on the sheet.

Step Four:
Make your dough into 2 tablespoon sized balls. Coat your little nuggets in the sugar & spice mixture. Place them 2 inches apart on the cookie sheet. Take the back of a spoon and lightly smoosh your cookie down (smoosh is a technical term for pushing down lightly). This will help them cook all the way through and also gives a nice "thumbprint" look to them.

Step Five:
Bake for 13-15 minutes each batch - let cool for 5 minutes before transferring your cookies onto a wire rack. Repeat until all the dough is gone. This recipe makes a boat-load of cookies - up to 6 dozen since I increased the amount of pumpkin. Which is why they would be perfect for a craft event - since you can help feed lots of customers who come to shop at our show.

Side Note:
About the Trader Joe's Pumpkin Pie Spice...
it's a combo of Cinnamon, Allspice, Nutmeg, Lemon Peel and Ginger - which is why I LOVE this stuff...it gives a great flavor to most all things that ask for Cinnamon and Nutmeg...and takes up much less room in your cupboard for those of us who want to save our pantry space for more art supplies. ;-)

If you're an Etsy seller in the San Francisco Bay Area, contact Jen from Mama's Magic Studio about joining SFEtsy!

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