Spiced pumpkin cookies
The days are getting colder. Cuddling up on a couch wrapped in a woolen throw with a warm cup of hot chocolate is the ultimate luxury.
It was raining outside! The wind and shower knocked out the few leaves on the branches. Fallen leaves clumped around the tree, not ready to part. I, stood on the porch and could empathize with those scattered leaves ending life so abruptly. It dampened my spirit and my comfort bubble burst poked by a strong gust of wind. It looked like nature was against everyone. Depressed, I wanted to go in and munch something badly. The cookie jar was empty. So, I decided to make more cookies with a vengeance.
In a lonely corner, I saw the pumpkin I bought, sulking like me and ready to rot if unattended. I gave it a new life. It is a great relief and distraction to indulge in a passion that is soothing. I pulled out my cook book. Soon the wafting smell that filled the house was a great consolation and I felt better instantly. The rain stopped and the reluctant sun turned up to the smell of cookies baking in my kitchen…just kidding!
Okay, that baking really helped! Now with a brighter mind-set, here is the recipe for soft pumpkin cookies I made for Fall relief.
1 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 tbsp pumpkin puree
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tbsp. toasted cashew bits
To make the pumpkin puree
- Cut a medium size pumpkin, remove the seeds and stringy stuff.
- Chop pumpkin into big chunks.
- Place the pieces upside down on a baking tray.
- Preheat the oven to 200° F and bake the pumpkin for 15 minutes or until it is very soft.
- Take the tray out and scoop out the flesh from the shell and mash with a spoon.
- Place butter at room temperature in a mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer for 30 seconds.
- Add sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg powders.
- Beat in the eggs and the vanilla extract.
- Add the pumpkin puree and beat to blend everything.
- Beat in as much flour as possible carefully (it sprays all around) and mix the remaining flour.
- Drop dough 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet/parchment paper and press cashew bits on top.
- Preheat oven to 350° F and bake cookies for 20 minutes or until the top starts browning.
- Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.
These are soft cookies that melt in your mouth. Cookies once cooled can be stored in air tight containers for 3 days or in the freezer for many months. Most of mine disappeared immediately. A note to self -try to stick to more healthy options.