These pumpkin cookies melt in your mouth
As much as I adore summer, I spend all year looking forward to celebrating fall. Gorgeous sunsets, blustery cool fronts and holiday meals. What’s not to like?
November, in particular, brings with it an abundance of enticing seasonal recipes. The pumpkin crescendo that began in September with the annual appearance of pumpkin spice lattes reaches its frenzied peak.
Pumpkin pies and tarts grace glossy magazine covers. Grocery store end caps overflow with cans of pumpkin purée. Home cooks scour cookbooks and the internet to compile a greatest hits menu for fall dinner parties, most often opting to end the meal with a pumpkin dessert so desirable guests go back for seconds.
These Pumpkin Meltaway cookies, made with pantry staples, are easy to prepare, filled with warm fall flavors and completely irresistible. They have a mild pumpkin flavor and soft cake-like texture. While they are delicious on their own, a dollop of decadent frosting makes them spectacular.
This pumpkin cookie dough is very soft and wet and best transferred to a baking sheet using a cookie scoop. A small offset spatula helps to spread the frosting. For a bolder pumpkin spice flavor, increase the amount of cinnamon and nutmeg in the dough.
Yield: About 5 dozen
2 cups butter, softened
2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
11⁄4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
11⁄4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 15-ounce can pumpkin
4 cups all-purpose flour
1⁄2 cup butter
1⁄2 cup packed brown sugar
1⁄4 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups powdered sugar
Ground cinnamon for sprinkling
Preheat oven to 350 F.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat 2 cups butter on medium speed for 30 seconds. With the mixer running, pour in the granulated sugar and continue beating until combined. Add the baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. It might be necessary to scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally.
Continue beating and add the eggs, 2 teaspoons of vanilla and pumpkin, continuing to beat until combined. Turn the mixer to low and add the flour a cup at a time. Continue mixing until thoroughly combined. Don’t over mix.
Use a cookie scoop, melon baller or teaspoon to scoop dough. Drop dough 2 inches apart on a baking sheet lined with a Silpat or parchment paper. Bake in a preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes. Carefully transfer hot cookies to a wire rack and allow to cool completely.
In a small saucepan, melt 1⁄2 cup butter over low heat. Add brown sugar and cook until the mixture is melted and smooth.
Transfer sugar mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer and pour in milk and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Using the paddle attachment, turn the mixer on low and gradually add the powdered sugar. Increase speed to medium and beat until smooth. If the frosting is too stiff, add a tablespoon of milk and mix thoroughly. Continue adjusting until a spreadable consistency is achieved. Frost cookies and sprinkle with cinnamon.
Alicia Cahill is owner of The Kitchen Chick, 528 23rd St. in Galveston.