Saturday, October 3, 2009

Pumpkin Cookies with Maple Cream Cheese Icing

Mmmmm, the smell of pumpkin cookies baking is heavenly! These literally melt in your mouth. If you live in a hot climate (like Phoenix!) baking these will psych you out into thinking that it really is fall, turning the air conditioner up and putting on a comfy sweater while eating these will help too.

Pumpkin Cookies with Maple Cream Cheese Icing

2 c. butter, softened
2 c. sugar
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1 15oz. can pumpkin
4 c. flour

4 Tbs butter, softened
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/3 c. maple syrup
1/4 c. milk
powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350.
In a large bowl beat butter on high speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Beat until combined, scraping bowl occasionally. Add eggs and 2 tsp vanilla; beat until combined. Beat in pumpkin. Add flour and stir until well combined.
Drop by heaping tablespoonfulls onto an ungreased (or stoneware) cookie sheet. Bake for 12-14 minutes.

For icing:
Beat together butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add maple syrup and milk, gradually add enough powdered sugar to reach spreading consistency, you want it to be spreadable but not thin enough to drip off the cookie. Add vanilla. After cookies are cooled, spread a little icing on top and let each cookie set.

Texas Sheet Cake

I think there are lots of names this cake goes by and I've had a couple of different versions, but this one is the best! The texture of the cake and frosting is so delicious. This is great served with ice cream and I like to make it when friends are over for dinner, that takes out the danger of me eating it all by myself!

Texas Sheet Cake

1 c. butter
1 c. water
1/4 c. baking cocoa (I use Hershey's)
2 c. flour
2 c. sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 c. sour cream

1/2 c. butter
1/4 c. plus 2 Tbs milk
3 Tbs cocoa
3 to 3 3/4 c. powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350.
In large saucepan bring to boil butter, water, and baking cocoa (whisk to remove lumps). Remove from heat.
Combine flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Beat in cocoa mixture. Gently blend in sour cream until smooth. Pour into a greased bar pan (1/2 sheet pan).
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, do not overbake!

While cake is baking, melt butter in saucepan. Whisk in milk and cocoa, bring to a boil and remove from heat. Whisk in powdered sugar and vanilla until smooth. Consistency should be slightly runny, not too thick. Pour over hot cake and spread to edges. Cool completely.