Monday, October 22, 2012

Soft Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies

The turn to autumn is one of my favorite things about living in New England. The air turns crisp, the leaves turn beautiful orange, yellow, and red hues, football starts up (go Pats!), and I can finally use the oven again without complaints that it's too hot. My husband's sweet tooth has suddenly come alive, as he has recently requested both caramel brownies and pumpkin chocolate chip cookies.
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Life has been a little crazy (evident by the tumbleweeds rolling through this blog), but I jumped at the chance to make cookies. They are usually pretty quick to throw together and would curb my yearning to get back to baking. I went straight to my blog to pull up the cookie recipe, only to discover it wasn't there. When I thought about it, I could barely remember ever having made pumpkin cookies before.

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I pulled up my trust excel spreadsheet of recipes, and right there was a recipe for soft pumpkin cookies, rated five stars - my highest rating. I'm not sure why I never blogged about them, but I'm so happy to have 'found' them again. I threw in a few tweaks and my usual substitutions, and the result was a soft, but sturdy, cookie that is perfect for fall!
Soft Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies
Soft Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies Source: Adapted from Joy the Baker and Big Fat Cookies
Yield: about 2 dozen cookies
 
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 1/4 cups evaporated cane juice
  • 1/2 cup (one stick) butter, at room temperature**
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
**I actually make this with Earth Balance butter sticks and it worked well.
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Stir the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices together in a medium bowl and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until lightened in color, about 2 minutes. Scrape the sides of the bowl as needed during mixing. On low speed, mix in the eggs, one at a time. Add the pumpkin and vanilla, mixing just until blended. Slowly add the flour mixture to incorporate it. Mix in the chocolate chips and cranberries.
  4. Scoop mounds of dough, roughly 2 tablespoons each, onto lined sheets.  Space cookies at least 2 1/2 inches apart.
  5. Bake cookies about 14 minutes, until the edges are just lightly brown. Cool cookies on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transfering to a wire rack to cool completely.  The cookies can be stored in a tightly covered container at room temperature for up to 4 days.

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