Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

It has already been well established that I like pumpkin, and fall flavors, and fall in general, so it was only a matter of time before this happened. I saw this post on pinterest, and then another recipe showed up in a friend's instagram feed, and combine that with a clean house and being ALMOST caught up on grading, and well, it will be a happy day at school tomorrow. The recipe was based on the link above, but I did make some changes.

Cookie Ingredients:
3 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 Tlbs cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp cardamom
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1.75 cup pumpkin puree (1 15 oz can)
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
Icing Ingredients:
1 8 oz package of neufchatel cheese, at room temp
1 stick of butter at room temp
2 cups powdered sugar
1-2 tsp vanilla
1-2 tsp cinnamon (to taste)

Mix dry ingredients (from flour down to cardamom) together in a medium sized bowl. In a large bowl, beat the remaining cookie ingredients together. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients slowly, mixing just until incorporated. Spoon cookie batter into 2 inch circles on a non-stick pan, making them relatively flat. Bake at 350 for 8 minutes*, then let cool for 1-2 minutes before removing them from the pan. Let them completely cool before frosting. To make the icing, mix the ingredients together and beat until smooth. If the icing is too sticky, add milk, a tsp at a time until the consistency is correct (you should be able to easily spread it without tearing apart the cookies, but not so runny it will all run off). Frost the flat side of  a cookie, then put another cookie on top to make a sandwich. Best served chilled, if you can resist.

*Her recipe said 14 minutes, and another recipe said 12. I have dark non-stick pans, and checked them at 8 minutes, and they were perfectly done. I didn't use evoo. Check on them and test with a toothpick. Doneness will depend on how thick your cookies are, and how hot your oven runs. Like a cake, the cookies should not have any raw material in the middle, and to keep them from burning or getting at all brown on the edges or top.

These are quite delicious. I grew up on chocolate whoopie pies, which are a Mennonite tradition and have been around long before becoming trendy in the last few years. These have a distinctly different flavor, but are still very good. I adjusted the spices from her recipe to intensify the flavor and I really like it. Thank goodness I work with a bunch of teachers, there will be no problem getting rid of these tomorrow. =) One other thing, I ended up with quite a lot of frosting left over. I think I used more than half of the frosting, so I didn't want to cut the recipe in half, but just be aware.

Rating - 4.5/5
Why? Delicious, but multistep processes and a lot of ingredients make it a less than simple recipe.

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