There. Now that we've gotten that out of the way let me tell you about our recipe today. Whoopie pies are a traditional American treat that all Americans should try if only because 1) they're delicious; 2) they're a part of history! And I love history, especially east coast history; their roots come from New England/Pennsylvania. They're called "whoopie" pies because when the children would see momma laying out these sweet treats, they would shout "Whoopie! Pies!" Or so the story goes.
Traditional whoopie pies come in chocolate, pumpkin, or gingerbread, and purists claim they must have a marshmallow cream filling- not frosting. These whoopie pies have a cream cheese marshmallow filling- can I just insert here how exciting it was to make my own marshmallow fluff- that is soft and creamy when it's fresh, but stiffens up a bit as it cools. If I were your neighbor, I'd be quite delighted to get a plate full of these.
Pumpkin Whoopie Pies
Recipe from The All-American Dessert Book (directions slightly altered)
Picture by Kelly
4 1/4 cups flour
2 tablespoons cinnamon
2 1/2 teaspoons ginger
1 3/4 teaspoons cloves
1 1/4 teaspoons nutmeg
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, slightly softened
1 cup shortening
1 2/3 cups brown sugar
1/4 cup molasses
1/3 cup sour cream (I used Greek yogurt)
2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/3 cups pumpkin
- In a large bowl, stir together the flour, cinnamon, ginger, cloes, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine butter, shortening, brown sugar, and molasses. Beat until well blended and lightened, about 2 minutes. Add the sour cream, egg, and vanilla, beating until very light and fluffy.
- Beat in the pumpkin just until smoothly incorporated. Beat in remaining flour mixture until well blended. Refrigerate until slightly firmer, 20 to 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. When dough is chilled, use a 1/4 cup measuring cup (for smaller cookies, a cookie scoop works well) and place scoops of dough onto a well greased baking sheet. Lightly dust your palm with flour and pat down the dough until tops are slightly flattened. Bake for 12-16 minutes, or until tinged with brown all over and just firm when pressed in the centers. Remove from heat and let stand about 2 minutes; transfer to cooling rack.
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
1/3 cup + 1/4 cup water, divided
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup powdered sugar
16 oz (2 packages) cream cheese, slightly softened and cut into chunks
- In a small measuring cup, sprinkle the gelatin over 1/3 cup cold water. Let stand, stirring once or twice until the gelatin softens, about 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a heavy saucepan, stir together the granulated sugar, corn syrup, and 1/4 cup hot water until well blended. Continuing to stir, raise the heat to high and bring to a full boil. Boil for 30 seconds and remove from heat.
- Stir in the gelatin until it dissolves completely.
To assemble: Lay half the cookies underside up. Spread a generous amount of filling in the center of each. Top with a second cookie, similar in size, and press down lightly on each whoopie pie so the filling almost squeezes out the edges. Serve immediately or freeze for up to one month.