Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Pumpkin Cookies with Cream Cheese Frosting

On Tuesday afternoons I am lucky enough to be able to take my four-year old granddaughter to her ballet class. Such fun to watch the young girls blossom in gracefulness.  Afterwards we come home for some quality Nana time before her Daddy picks her up after work.  Some days can be a little tricky; the physical exertion of ballet class and no afternoon nap can often equal a tired (and cranky) little girl.  So I try to do things to keep her occupied, yet not over-exhaust her.  She loves to work with me in the kitchen so today we made these pumpkin cookies. They are quite easy to make with steps that were very easy for her to assist me with. The best part is they are delicious.  Most anything with cream cheese frosting is!  These cookies are rather like mini pumpkin bars; soft and full of cinnamon and pumpkin goodness.  I like to add a little crunch to them, so top them with some crushed Heath bar candy.  I guarantee the combination is a winner!
On the way home from dance today she told me she was tired.  I told her we would get into our comfy clothes and rest awhile before making our cookies.  She went to change and came out in her pajamas.  I asked her why, it was only 3pm?  She said, "Nana, these are my most comfy clothes."  How could I argue with that? So we baked cookies in our pajamas.  My husband wasn't quite sure what was going on when he came home but Avery and I had a nice day in the kitchen, being extra comfy!
Yes, we had powdered sugar everywhere! Oh, well!
1 cup butter, softened
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup canned pumpkin
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup chopped walnuts (if desired)
1.4 ounce Heath candy bar (English toffee), chopped finely

1/4 cup butter, softened
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 cups confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy.  Beat in egg and vanilla.  Add pumpkin; mix well.  In a separate bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt and baking powder; gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well.  Stir in walnuts, if desired.

Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls (I use a small ice cream scoop) 2 inches apart onto greased baking sheets (or lined with parchment paper).  Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned.  Remove to wire racks to cool completely.

In a small bowl, beat the frosting ingredients until light and fluffy.  Frost cookies.  Top with chopped Heath Bar candy.

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