Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Sweaters, boots and Pumpkies too.

 Fall is finally starting to show up, at least a little bit, here in Southern California. Yesterday morning it was brisk enough to bundle up in a few layers and that's just what we did. I didn't even realized Nat and I were matching until we were out the door on our way to school. After dropping her off and taking Finn for a small walk, we headed back home and I took the opportunity to try my hand at a baking idea I had earlier this week.

I thought about the concept of brownies and figured why couldn't I do that with pumpkin instead. I have heard of pumpkin brownies and pumpkin bars but I wanted to be creative and try something different. And call it Pumpkies. So that's what I did. Following a basic brownies recipe, I used pumpkin instead of cocoa, whole wheat flour in place of all purpose flour and added cinnamon, ginger and chopped pecans.The result was more than I could expect! Everyone here loved them and since I had to play around with baking times and oven degrees, I made a second batch later in the evening to help finalize the recipe. Get ready for a moist, dense but not heavy, pumpkin pie like sweet treat.

(italics, my own notes)

Soft butter, for greasing the pan
Flour, for dusting the buttered pan
4 large eggs
1 cup sugar, sifted
1 cup brown sugar, sifted
8 ounces melted butter
1 1/4 pumpkin, canned
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup whole wheat flour, sifted
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3/4 cups chopped pecans

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour an 8-inch square pan (I used a small casserole dish). In a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the eggs at medium speed until fluffy and light yellow (Since I didn't have access to my mixer, I vigorously hand whisked the eggs). Add both sugars. Add remaining ingredients, and mix to combine.
Pour the batter into a greased and floured pan and bake for 50 minutes. Check for doneness with the tried-and-true toothpick method: a toothpick inserted into the center of the pan should come out clean. When it's done, remove to a rack to cool. Resist the temptation to cut into it until it's mostly cool. Seriously, resist the urge! My first batch I couldn't wait and made a mess of it. A delicious, pumpkiny mess. See photo below.

 Thankful to have let the second batch cool through the night and have it waiting for me this morning, with a nice hot cup of coffee with cinnamon. Mmmm, Autumn goodness.


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