Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving & Pumpkin Carmel Whoopee Pies!

Happy Thanksgiving to all my blogger friends & family. The winner of my cookbook giveaway will be receiving it shortly in the mail. This was her comment/email to my question "What are you thankful for?"

"My list of what I'm thankful for is mighty long. It has what most people have, family, friends, job, my car, $ to pay my bills, my health, house,and extras. Lately, I've been trying really hard to see what smaller things in my life I'm thankful for, and here are some,

I am thankful for not just my family, but for the relationship that I have with my sister, I really like her, for my boss letting me out 30 minutes early on Mondays- I miss all the traffic to pick up my son, for my dentist who gave me the gift of a new electronic toothbrush, saving me a ton of $$$$, for my car needing no repairs so far this month, for everyday I wake up and can pet my dog. For the laughter my household has daily, for my 30 minutes of quiet time each morning, for the cutout cookies being exactly what our little guy wanted them to be and not being burnt, he loved them, and my list continues, I am really really blessed." 

You will be receiving your Smitten Kitchen Cookbook soon!

Pumpkin Whoopee Pies, YUM! A very nice change from the chocolate cake bottoms. These actually, are very similar to a pumpkin roll. The filling has a nice carmel sauce addition to the cream cheese batter. You should definitely use this filling recipe if making a pumpkin roll. These are perfect individual servings which makes a nice addition to a dessert buffet table. I rolled a few in colored sprinkles and some plain. For those guest who love pumpkin pie & for those who love pumpkin roll, this dessert is a little of both. I know that with my tradition of having a cup of coffee with a slice of pie on the morning after Thanksgiving, these are going to fit the bill nicely.

Enjoy dinner with those around your table and may you find God's blessings rich.

Pumpkin Carmel Whoopie Pies-(Emily Luchetti-Martha Stewart siriusxm.com/martha)

Ingredients for the cakes-

1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar (I used light)
3/4 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 cup vegetable oil

Ingredients for the Caramel filling-

8 oz cream cheese room temperature
1/2 cup cold caramel sauce, homemade or store bought (I used store bought)
4 Tablespoons unsalted butter
large pinch kosher salt

For the garnish-

1/4 cup cocoa nibs
2 Tablespoons diced candied ginger

-or- holiday sprinkles of your choice


Preheat oven to 350 degreees. In a bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and ginger. In another bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugars, oil and pumpkin puree. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix well.

Line 2 baking sheets w/parchment paper. Place 1 Tablespoon - mounds of batter several inches apart on the baking sheets. If you have large sheets you can fit 15 on each. Bake for 10-12 minutes until firm to the touch. Cool to room temperature before you fill.

Filling- Beat all filling ingredients together until well mixed. Place a heaping tablespoon of the filling on the flat side of one cookie and top with another cookie. If desired, roll in sprinkles or the garnish of choice or leave plain.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Give Away & Rice Crispy Treats

After the short delay due to hurricane Sandy, my Smitten Kitchen Cookbook has arrived! Yeah! This book is beautiful. Once you take a look at the gorgeous food photography and read the short stories behind the recipes, you will want to get cooking or baking something right away. I have followed Deb's blog www.smittenkitchen.com for sometime now and her new cookbook is as delightful as her blog.  I flipped through the book as soon as I got it and now am taking my time reading each recipe. The first one I tried was her pizza crust and that did not disappoint. Trust me
we are picky about our pizza crust and so far Deb's ranks up there with our favorite made with beer (that's right) (recipe soon to come). I'm a huge fan of rice crispy treats, so when I saw her recipe tweaked a bit, I had to make a batch. Who would of thought that browning the butter, adding a touch of salt would make that much difference! Oh, but it does... Just a hint of salt now & then against the sweetness of the marshmallows and a slightly nutty flavor from the butter. You must make these NOW!! They should be on your dessert menu whenever possible. Who doesn't love rice crispy treats? You will love these. I also love s'mores. It's probably a very good thing that I do not have a wood burning fireplace. S'more making would be a nightly event for me. So, when I came across her picture of S'more layer cake, yes, you know where I'm going with this...Well, it will be on my list of what I'm baking next. 

I am also very glad to announce that I will be given away one of her cookbooks! Contest starts today and will close on Tuesday, November 20th at midnight. Since I mentioned on my last post about keeping track of your blessings till Thanksgiving, I would love to hear what some of those blessings are and or what you are most thankful for. The winner will be randomly chosen. Winner to be announced on November 21st.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.

Salted Brown Butter Crispy Treats-
the smitten kitchen cookbook


8 Tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for the pan
heaping 1/4 teaspoon flaky sea salt
one 10oz bag large or miniature marshmallows
6 cups puffed-rice cereal (or just about 1/2 of a 12oz box)


Butter  an 8" square pan with 2" inch sides.

Brown the butter in a large pot. Melt 1 stick of butter over medium heat. It will melt, then foam, then turn clear golden, and finally start to turn brown and smell nutty. Stir frequently, scraping up the bits on the bottom of the pan. Do not take you eyes off the butter, it will go from golden to burnt in a matter of seconds. As soon as the butter is melted and takes on a nutty color, turn the heat off and sprinkle the salt over the butter. Stir in the marshmallows, the heat should be enough to melt them, but if not, turn the heat on to low and stir till smooth.

Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the cereal until well coated. Quickly spread into the prepared pan. Use a piece of waxed or parchment paper that has been sprayed to press it firmly into the pan. I just lightly butter my hands and pressed the cereal mixture into the pan. Let cool and cut into squares.