Pumpkin Chocolate Spice Cookies

Friday, October 17, 2014


The Fall leaves, bursting in crimson and orange, briskness in the air, warm meals, fires lit at night, these are heaven to my husband, as peonies in the Spring are to me. My heart is most filled with joy when Spring, in all it's floral glory appears, leading into the heat of summer with long days at the beach, juicy tomatoes and fruit, swimming, sun tans and outdoor bbq's. But mostly, it's about the flowers and warmth for me. For Cam, it's the snow and cold. To that I laugh, to each his own!! I am so thankful that God gives us change. He doesn't stifle our thoughts and desires but gives us new ones. He gives us new seasons with changing produce, foliage, flowers, weather, wardrobes. I love watching our table change, too. A pitcher of garden roses, ranunculus, peonies and sweetpeas in the Spring and summer, sunflowers, dahlias, gourds and pumpkins going into Fall. Greens, poinsettias, and camellias blooming in winter.


And with all four seasons comes cravings for the foods that shine in each one. Right now it's all about pumpkins, squash, cheesy potatoes, hearty soups, pomegranates, apples, mushrooms. My favorite part is how all of the delicious foods and meals this time of year bring family together, or in our case, without family in Monterey, friends. Food has a way of breaking barriers, opening doors and helping relationships grow. I experienced that nearly every day in Okinawa each time our neighbors gifted us with a basket of produce or I returned the favor with a freshly baked cinnamon twist bread or plate of warm chocolate chip cookies. Or in the case today, pumpkin chocolate spice cookies for our neighbors from Indonesia and for my husband who absolutely loves this season and the next. What says "Welcome to America" and "I love you, honey!" more than warm cookies and milk?!


Pumpkin Chocolate Spice Cookies
{makes about 2 dozen}

1/2 C  or  8 TBS pureed pumpkin
1/2 C (or 1 stick) of salted butter
1/4 C pure maple syrup
1/2 C packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon pure almond extract
1 egg, room temperature
1 3/4 C all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
I bar of high quality chocolate, chopped

The flavor in these cookies is not overpowering, and I reduced the amount of sugar I would normally use so they are not overly sweet either. I wanted them to be a little chewy and moist and have the pumpkin flavor shine while not be "too much." I would recommend making some, tasting them, and then try adding more sugar and spices if you like a stronger taste. They are delicious with a glass of milk, or even in the morning with a cup of coffee. Nana Beth, I have in my head to make a gluten and dairy-free version, coming soon!

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Melt the butter (if just pulled from the refrigerator, microwave for about a minute, or melt over the stovetop) and whisk the brown sugar and maple syrup with it until smooth. Mix in the vanilla and almond extracts and pumpkin. Whisk in the egg.

Fold in the flour, salt, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice and cinnamon. Reserve about 1/4 of the chocolate pieces. Fold in the remaining chocolate until just combined. Place spoonfuls of dough on a baking sheet covered in parchment paper about 2 inches apart from each other. Press the chocolate pieces into the tops of the cookies. Bake for about 8 minutes, remove from the oven, slide the parchment paper off the baking sheet and let the cookies cool. If you prefer crunchier, less chewy cookies, let them bake for 10-12 minutes. Enjoy!

13 comments:

  1. As always this looks delicious!!! :) Happy Fall sweet friend!
    :) Rebecca

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    1. To you, too! I hope all is well as can be. Sending a bear hug your way!

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  2. Oh Amanda, you never fail us! I still make your focaccia at least once a week! :)

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    1. Aw do you!!? That makes me so happy to hear. Thank you, Kaysie! And so good catching up with you the other day!

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  3. Mmmmm!!!And I second a gluten free version!!! These look relish! xoxo

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    1. Coming up as soon as I can love!!

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  4. I'm not a big fan of pumpkin, but these look delicious! I just might have to give them a try!

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    1. I hope you like them, Alyssa! Maybe it'll turn you on to pumpkin? ;)

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  5. I've had a hard time finding "almost" extract. Is it available at Trader Joe's? :)
    mmmm these look delish!
    love, lanneybear

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    1. HAHA you are the best spellchecker that ever lived, Lanna Britt!!!!! And darn autocorrect!

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