This summer I had my very first whoopie pie while visiting New England. Why on earth did I wait so long? These cakey-cream-filled-cookies are fun to eat and yummy. One of my favorite things to do is to re-live and re-create food memories at home. So I made my own whoopie pies!
I wanted to make something something completely different from the traditional Cranberry Island chocolate whoopie pies I had in Maine, and I wanted to go the more festive route. I chose the ever-popular Pumpkin Whoopie Pies by the guys at Baked. I knew I couldn't go wrong. As you know, I love their cookbooks.
Here they are: Pumpkin Whoopie Pies with Cream Cheese Filling!
Don't they look divine? Trust me they were. I knew this recipe was going to be delicious. It had been given much acclaim by almost everyone, including Martha Stewart. And speaking of that you must watch the video where Matt, one of the owners of BAKED NYC, makes the whoopie pies on her show. I love watching how the bakers themselves make it. Even though there are tips in the book (which are crucial), it's fun to watch.
I also think you'll get some entertainment out of the segment. Matt did such a great job. It has got to be a fun challenge to go make something on Martha. In my opinion, it is one of the hardest shows todo a cooking segment on. You never know what Martha is going to throw-in or toss out. The PR girl in me is thinking about how I would prep someone for this show. I swear my Q&A and scenario list would be pages long and we would tape run-throughs out the wazoo. Matt, I'm not sure if you got extra media training, but kudos!
Now back to the whoopies!
Here are my notes:
* Quick and easy to make. Minimal work for such a high ROI!
* I loved making these by hand. Anytime I get to use a wooden spoon I smile.
* Next time I would love to try my hand at grinding my own spices for these. With that said, I had some wonderful high-end spices, especially cinnamon.
* Listen to the BAKED note and chill my pumpkin longer. Make sure to portion it out then chill it rather than in the can. My cookies spread, but not too much. It was my fault.
My husband lived in New England for a couple years and didn't have the best impression of whoopie pies. He always thought they were overrated and never cared for the Crisco filling. But he loved these, particularly the cool spice flavor that lingered.
You've got to add these Pumpkin Whoopie Pies to your holiday bake list. I know it's December but Pumpkin is still cool, people!
Pumpkin Whoopie Pies with Cream Cheese Filling
from BAKED: New Frontiers in Baking
Makes 12 whoopie pies
* FOR THE PUMPKIN WHOOPIE COOKIES
* 3 cups all-purpose flour
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 1 teaspoon baking soda
* 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
* 1 tablespoon ground ginger
* 1 tablespoon ground cloves
* 2 cups firmly packed dark-brown sugar
* 1 cup vegetable oil
* 3 cups pumpkin puree, chilled
* 2 large eggs
* 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
* FOR THE CREAM-CHEESE FILLING
* 3 cups confectioners' sugar
* 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
* 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
* 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
(I also added the beans from 1 Tahitian Vanilla Bean)
1. Make the cookies: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat; set aside.
2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves; set aside. In another large bowl, whisk together brown sugar and oil until well combined. Add pumpkin puree and whisk until combined. Add eggs and vanilla and whisk until well combined. Sprinkle flour mixture over pumpkin mixture and whisk until fully incorporated.
3. Using a small ice cream scoop with a release mechanism, drop heaping tablespoons of dough onto prepared baking sheets, about 1 inch apart. Transfer to oven and bake until cookies are just starting to crack on top and a toothpick inserted into the center of each cookie comes out clean, about 15 minutes. Let cool completely on pan.
4. Make the filling: Sift confectioner' sugar into a medium bowl; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter until smooth. Add cream cheese and beat until well combined. Add confectioners' sugar and vanilla, beat just until smooth. (Filling can be made up to a day in advance. Cover and refrigerate; let stand at room temperature to soften before using.)
5. Assemble the whoopie pies: Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. Transfer filling to a disposable pastry bag and snip the end. When cookies have cooled completely, pipe a large dollop of filling on the flat side of half of the cookies. Sandwich with remaining cookies, pressing down slightly so that the filling spreads to the edge of the cookies. Transfer to prepared baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate cookies at least 30 minutes before serving and up to 3 days.
You can print out the recipe from Martha Stewart's site, here.
If you're looking for a cookbook to give for Christmas this year, buy BAKED: New Frontiers in Baking or BAKED Explorations. You will love them!