Newlyweds navigating their way through married life – and the kitchen

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Pumpkin Oreo Truffles

There’s this crazy little truffle movement going on out there – where creative combinations of cookies and cream cheese, food processed together into oblivion, rolled into balls, and covered in chocolate is making dessert the easiest it’s ever been, and the most delicious!

These Pumpkin Truffles are no different.  I’m pretty sure you could blend oreos with dishwashing soap and it would still taste like heaven.  But I thought “hmm, how can I get as much pumpkin into my diet as possible” – and this was the answer 🙂

Pumpkin Oreo Truffles
*Pumpkin Cream Cheese Recipe taken from Skinnytaste

INGREDIENTS

1 block (8 oz) 1/3 fat cream cheese

1/2 cup pumpkin puree

1 tsp. vanilla

1 tsp. cinnamon

1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

2 tbsp. brown sugar

1 tbsp. agave nectar

1 regular sized bag of oreo cookies

8 oz. milk/dark/or white chocolate

1) Combine the first 7 ingredients in a mixing bowl, beating until smooth.

2) Place oreo cookies in a large ziplock bag and crush lightly.  Then place oreos and pumpkin cream cheese in a food processor or standing mixer and combine until a dough-like ball forms.

3) Chill the dough in the fridge for about 1/2 hour, to let it firm up a bit.

4) Roll tbsp. sized balls of the dough and place on wax paper.

5) In a double boiler, melt your chocolate.

6) Once the chocolate is melted, dip each ball of dough into the chocolate until fully covered and place back on the wax paper to dry.  Sprinkle with oreo crumbs if you wish.

The pumpkin flavoring is slight, but you know it’s there.  Of course, if you wanted a more pumpkin’y flavor, you could try using less oreos.  But for me personally, it was a perfect ratio.  And I used white chocolate vs. dark or milk for 2 reasons:

1) I had some in my cabinet

2) I honestly felt that the white chocolate would help the pumpkin flavor to come through vs. the milk or dark which might make them overpoweringly chocolatey (not that I think that’s a bad thing!).

So here’s an easy, poppable dessert for your next fall gathering – and they’re puppy approved 🙂

Pumpkin Oreo Truffles

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Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

I know everyone’s sad about Summer being over and all but how can you be sad when FALL is the next season on deck? Augh, the leaves! The crisp air! The apples! The pumpkins! The pumpkin beer! I’m getting giddy just thinking about it and all the amazing foodstuffs that come with it!

This recipe for Pumpkin Chocolate Chip muffins is a recipe of my mom’s. I can’t really remember when she started making these, but when she did, they became one of my most favorite fall treats of all time.  I remember she’d send me back to college with them after a weekend home, and after eating about 1/2 dozen myself, I would then contemplate sharing them with others.  And then when I had my own apartment and my own kitchen, I started making them myself.  And now, it’s not really fall in my mind until I’ve made a batch – and that’s exactly what I did this past weekend. After some yucky rain and humidity, Sunday was a gorgeous fall day, blue sky with a little chill in the air – the perfect day for Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins.  I have no idea of the origin of this recipe, all I know is that it proves that some of the best recipes of all time are scribbled down on a piece of notebook paper.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins
*Mom’s Recipe 🙂

INGREDIENTS
*yields about 2 dozen muffins

2 cups sugar

1.5 cups vegetable oil

4 eggs

3 cups flour

2 tsp. baking powder

2 tsp. baking soda

3 tsp. cinnamon

2 tsp. salt

1 – 15oz. can of pumpkin puree

1.5 cups mini chocolate chips

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2) Cream together sugar, oil and eggs in a standing mixer or electric beaters.

3) In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt.  Slowly add to the sugar/oil/egg mixture until combined.

4) Add the pumpkin puree and mix well.

5) Fold in the mini chips.

6) Scoop 1/4 cup of muffin batter into a greased muffin tin or cupcake papers.  Bake in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes and let cool.

It’s arguable that this could almost be considered more of a ‘cupcake’ than a ‘muffin’ but really, who cares? They’re the perfect start to a cool fall morning 🙂

Enjoy and happy fall to all!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins


Chocolate Stout Pumpkin Brownies

 

So I’ve provided a perfect fall dinner for you – and now here’s dessert.

I know that there are still some decent weeks of summer left, but fall is by far my most favorite season of the year.  The beautiful colors of the leaves, the crisp chill in the air, and the shameless use of PUMPKIN in everything.

This recipe caught my eye because 1) it used beer 2) it called for pumpkin and 3) well, brownies might just be one of my most favorite desserts ever.  This is the third recipe that I’ve used from Women’s Health Magazine – these ladies really know their beer recipes! While visually, I don’t think they came out quite as well as the WHM ladies version, tastefully, they delivered!

Chocolate Stout Pumpkin Brownies

Chocolate Stout Pumpkin Brownies
*Womens Health Magazine

INGREDIENTS

2 Tbsp low-fat cream cheese, room temperature

1/2 cup plus 1/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup canned pumpkin

3 large eggs, room temperature

1 cup plus 2 Tbsp whole-wheat pastry flour

1 tsp cinnamon, divided

6 oz bittersweet baking chocolate, chopped

2 Tbsp unsalted butter

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 cup stout beer, room temperature

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1) Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease an 8-inch square baking pan. In a bowl, stir together cream cheese, 1/4 cup sugar, canned pumpkin, 1 egg, 2 tablespoons flour, and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon; set aside.

2) Place chocolate and butter in a metal bowl and heat over a pot of simmering water, stirring until completely melted. Remove the mixture from the heat and stir in 1/2 cup sugar. Mix in 2 eggs, one at a time. Gently stir in 1 cup flour, cocoa powder, beer, vanilla extract, baking powder,  salt, and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon.

3) Scrape half the chocolate batter into the prepared baking pan and spread evenly. Spread half the pumpkin mixture on top, then add the remaining chocolate mixture on top of that and spread evenly. Top with the remaining pumpkin mixture. Gently swirl batter with a butter knife. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Let cool before slicing.

These were phenomenal, however I think next time there are a couple things I might do differently.  1) Double the pumpkin mixture – I felt that the chocolatey-ness of the brownies really overp0wered the deliciousness of the pumpkin swirl on the top.  So I would recommend doing that, especially if you love pumpkin!

I also think I would maybe cut back on the amount of unsweetened baking chocolate, maybe from 6 oz. to 4 or 3.  I personally don’t love that bitter chocolate taste, and felt that the brownies were a little bit on the bitter chocolatey side, so I think I would just maybe cut back on it a bit next time.

You guys will love these though 🙂 Another keeper for ‘Cooking with Beer’!

Chocolate Stout Pumpkin Brownies



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