Friday, November 14, 2008

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

I hear that it's fall somewhere. Not around these parts, at least not yet, so I like to pretend that it is with these cookies. I like to bake them around Halloween time, although this a great pumpkin pie alternative around Thanksgiving as well.

1 cup softened margarine or butter (2 sticks)
3 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 15oz can canned pumpkin*
2 teaspoons vanilla
5 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons nutmeg
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 12oz bags milk chocolate chips

* For those of you who may be a bit more purist in your cooking, this is about 2 cups of your own homemade pumpkin puree. For those of you who want to learn how to do this, there's a great tutorial here.

1. Preheat the oven to 350F (around 175C) and grease your cookie sheets.

2. Cream the butter & sugar until fluffy. I left my electric mixer in the picture because this is the only time you'll use it.

3. Add all the wet stuff (pumpkin, eggs, vanilla) & stir it all together.

4. In another bowl, add all the dry stuff (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon.) The original directions said to sift it, but I find that just stirring it all together works rather nicely.

Alternatively, do this first and have your little helpers stir it all together while you get all the wet stuff taken care of.

5. Dump the bowl of dry stuff into the bowl of wet stuff. I think you're *supposed* to do this bit by bit, but I just dump it all in there at once. You do have to be bit more careful when you're stirring so you're not breathing the flour, but it works.

6. Stir in the chocolate chips. I prefer to use all milk-chocolate chips, but the store didn't have 2 bags. So this is one bag of milk chocolate & one bag of semi-sweet.

7. Drop by teaspoon or nifty scoop onto your greased cookie sheets. I can get 16 on one well-loved sheet.

8. Bake for as long as they need. In my portal to Hades, that is 8 minutes, followed by about 2 minutes more sitting on the sheet that is now on top of the oven. You want the edges to be set, but not hard. Remove to wax paper/racks/foil to cool completely.

This will make a boatload (60-75, depending on size) of delicious cookies. Enjoy!!

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