Friday, November 8, 2013

Pumpkin Cookies with Chocolate and Butterscotch

In the past, my car trips to and from the store, the gym, or church were an opportunity for me to collect my thoughts, make a phone call, or form a "to-do list" in my head. Time in the car was productive because the kids were normally pretty quiet (for once) and strapped in one place so I knew they weren't injuring themselves. However, those quiet moments have been obliterated because Matthew has insisted on checking out CDs full of children's music from our local library to play during our drives. The latest picks currently in our CD case are a compilation of songs from various Veggie Tale productions, The Complete Thomas Sing-Along CD, and a treasury of the 27 most obnoxious children's songs ever composed (I don't know the actual name of it...but there is a singing teapot featured on the CD case to illustrated the song that begins the 67 minutes of torture that is this gem of an album).

Matthew's favorite song is "The Wheels on the Bus" and lately he has been insisting on beginning our fun car rides with that song. He will sing the lyrics from the back seat as loud as he can (as if playing the CD wasn't loud enough) and actually get upset when I decline joining him (catchy though that little ditty may be). The other day, the temperature in the car was a bit warm, so I had all our windows cracked so as to allow the breeze to circulate around us. Of course, the obnoxious Wheel on the Bus song was playing at full volume. When we came to a stop at a busy intersection, I could see the heads of the drivers of the surrounding cars turn to try to determine which car was playing that annoying song. I felt the need to hide behind my steering wheel.

At the next intersection, we hit yet another red light and this time a young man pulled up beside us in his car. His windows were also rolled down, and he glanced over when he heard the music coming from my car and began to laugh: "You go, Mama!" He then proceeded to turn on some tribal music with lots of drums and foul language to drown out the happy playtime music emanating from our vehicle. I was relieved when that light finally turned green.

Yes, my life has certainly changed since I have had children. I cannot name a single song in the Top 40 right now, but I can sing every verse from "This Old Man" along with my 3-year-old.

The recipe I want to share with you today is a pumpkin cookie that is unlike any of the soft, almost cake-like cookies typically made with pumpkin. These are similar in texture to those "soft batch" chocolate chip cookies you can buy in the store, They are soft, chewy, lightly spiced, and packed full of chocolate and butterscotch chips. I was not super jazzed with these when I first pulled them out of the oven, but when they had cooled a bit and given the flavors a bit more time to mingle, they were fantastic. Paul declared these cookies "amazing" and insisted on taking them on his business trip as a snack for the long airplane ride. Matthew also ate about 6 in one sitting, which is unusual for him because he normally demonstrates so much fastidious restraint around baked goods. Personally, my favorite pumpkin cookies are still these, but I did really enjoy this recipe! If you are looking for a different way to use up some canned pumpkin, I highly recommend these!

Pumpkin Cookies with Chocolate and Butterscotch
adapted from Baked by Rachel

10 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
6 tablespoons pumpkin puree
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
Pinch of ground cloves
3/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup butterscotch chips

In a large bowl or stand mixer, cream together butter and sugars. Mix in pumpkin, vanilla and dry ingredients. Stir in chocolate chips. Cover and chill until dough is completely firm and cool.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a baking mat. Roll the dough into 1-inch balls, placing dough about 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheet.

Bake for 10-11 minutes. Keep an eye on the first batch to make sure they do not overbake. Allow cookies to rest on baking sheet for 2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat process with remaining dough.

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