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Monthly Archives: September 2013

Pumpkin Cream Whoopie Pies

From Real Simple

Total cook time: About 1 hour 30 minutes

Pumpkin Cream Whoopie Pies

3 TBSP unsalted butter, at room temp
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
4 oz (1/2 cup) canned pumpkin puree
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 large egg
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/4 tsp kosher salt
5 1/3 oz (2/3 cup) cream cheese, at room temp
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup confectioners sugar


  • Preheat the oven to 375 F. Prepare a parchment or silpat lined baking sheet.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients – flour, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, and salt.
  • In a mixing bowl, beat the butter, brown sugar, and sugar until smooth.
  • Add in the pumpkin, vanilla, and egg.  Mix till well combined.
  • Slowly mix in the dry ingredients.  Beat on setting 4 until fully incorporated.
  • Spoon heaping tablespoons of the mixture, 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheet. Make an even number.
  • Bake about 10 minutes, until puffed and cooked through.
  • Meanwhile, in a cleaned mixer, beat the cream cheese, heavy cream, and confectioners sugar until smooth and spreadable.
  • Spread the flat sides of the cooled cookies with the cream mixture.  Top with remaining cookies.

Fudgy Cocoa No Bake Treats

Perfect for summer time when you don’t want to turn on the stove!

Total cook time: Around 3 hours
Total hands on time: Around 30 minutes

Fudgy Cocoa No Bake Treats

3 cups quick cooking oats
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter
2/3 cup creamy peanut butter (Jif)
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup peanuts, chopped (optional)
1/3 cup cocoa
2 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla


  • Line cookie sheet with waxed paper.
  • Measure out all ingredients and set aside.
  • In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, butter, milk and cocoa.  Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to a rolling boil.
  • Remove from heat. Add oats, peanut butter, peanuts, and vanilla.  Stir quickly, mixing well.
  • Immediately drop heaping teaspoons of dough onto prepared sheet.
  • Put into the refrigerator to cool so cookies firm up, about 2-3 hours.  Store in a cool dry place.

Magic Cookie Bars


Total cook time: About an hour

Magic Cookie Bars

1/2 cup butter
1 1/2 cups Graham cracker crumbs
1, 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
1, 16 oz package semi-sweet chocolate chips
1, 3.5 oz can flaked coconut (1 1/3 cup fresh)
1 cup walnuts, chopped


  • Preheat oven to 350 F.
  • Melt butter in a 13 X 9 inch baking pan.
  • Sprinkle graham cracker crumbs over melted butter, mix together, and press into bottom of pan.
  • Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over the crumbs.
  • Top evenly with remaining ingredients, press down firmly.
  • Bake 30 minutes until lightly browned.
  • Cool thoroughly before cutting.

Northland Cookies

This recipe is a real throwback.  These cookies don’t have any modern techniques, or modern ingredients.  But they are simply good.  Yet another cookie that brings me back to holidays with my family.

Total cook time: 4 hours
Total hands on time: 30 minutes

Northland Cookies

1 3/4 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
6 TBSP shortening, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup cold water
1/2 cup almonds, chopped


  • Preheat oven to 400 F. Use ungreased baking sheets.
  • In a separate bowl, sift together dry ingredients – flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon
  • In mixing bowl, cream together shortening and brown sugar.
  • Stir in water
  • Stir dry ingredients into dough.
  • Add in almonds.
  • Mix thoroughly with hands.
  • On a sheet of waxed paper, press into a long roll. Wrap, and chill, until stiff. About 2-3 hours.
  • Cut into thin slices, place on cookie sheets.
  • Bake for 5-6 minutes until lightly brown.

Yummy Caramel Bars

My absolute favorite holiday treat!

Total cook time: About 3 hour 30 minutes
Total hands on time: about 1 hour
Yummy Caramel Bars

32 Caramels (usually one bag is enough)
2.6 oz (1/3 cup) evaporated milk
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup old fashioned oats
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) butter
1, 6 oz package semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup pecans, chopped


  • Preheat oven to 350 F. Lightly butter an 11 X 7 inch baking pan.
  • In a double boiler, combine caramels and evaporated milk. Heat, stirring occasionally, until caramels are melted and mixture is smooth.  Remove from heat and set aside.
  • In a large (not kitchenaid) bowl, sift flour, baking soda, and salt.
  • Stir in brown sugar and oats.
  • Cut in butter until mixture looks like coarse crumbs.
  • Turn half of the oat mixture into prepared pan and press evenly into bottom.
  • Bake 10 -15 mins until lightly browned.
  • Remove from oven and sprinkle evenly with chocolate pieces, pecans, then reserve caramel mixture.
  • Sprinkle remaining oat mixture evenly over the caramel.
  • Return to oven and bake 20 mins more, until lightly browned.
  • Set on a wire rack to cool for about 35 minutes.
  • Chill in refrigerator for 2 hours, until caramel layer is set.
  • Cut into bars, and store into an airtight container.

Peanut Blossoms

The peanut butter cookies with a Hershey’s kiss on top!

Total cook time: About an hour

Peanut Blossoms

1 3/4 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter (Jif)
1 egg
2 TBSP milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
48 milk chocolate kisses (usually one bag is enough)

1/2 cup sugar for rolling the dough balls in


  • Preheat oven to 375 F. Use ungreased cookie sheets.
  • In a mixing bowl combine all ingredients except for the candies.  Mix on low speed (Kitchenaid 2) until dough is well formed.
  • Shape dough into teaspoon sized balls.
  • Roll dough balls in sugar and place on cookie sheet.
  • Bake 8-9 minutes. (8 minutes for thin cookie sheet, 9 minutes for the thicker aluminum sheet)
  • Take out of oven and top each cookie with a candy kiss, pressing down firmly to make cookie crack around the edges.
  • Remove to a wire rack to cool.

Oatmeal Raisin or Chocolate Chip Cookies

These can be either oatmeal raisin or oatmeal chocolate chip depending on your crowd!
This recipe is the Quaker Oats recipe.

Total cook time: Maybe an hour

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
3 cups oats (either old fashioned or quick cooking)
1 cup raisins OR chocolate chips
1 cup walnuts


  • Preheat the oven to 350 F. Use ungreased cookie sheets.
  • In mixer, cream together the butter, brown sugar, and sugar. About 5 minutes.
  • Add eggs and vanilla, beat well.
  • In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.
  • Add in to the dough mixing well.
  • Stir in the oats, raisins/chocolate chips, and nuts. Mix well.
  • Drop by teaspoonful onto cookie sheet.
  • Bake 10-12 minutes until golden brown.