Pumpkin Whoopie Pies
From: Dozen Flours
4 cups flour
2 Tbs. cinnamon
2 1/2 tsp. ginger
2 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup shortening, at room temperature
1 2/3 cup dark brown sugar, packed
2 Tbs. mild flavored molasses
2 Tbs. real maple syrup
1/2 cup full fat sour cream, at room temperature
1 large egg, at room temperature, slightly beaten
1 Tbs. vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups solid packed pumpkin
1 Tbs. + 1 tsp. unflavored gelatin
1/3 cup + 1/4 cup water, divided
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract (can use clear if you want the filling to be super white)
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
2 8 0z. pkg. cream cheese, softened and cut into several pieces
1/2 cup light corn syrup
In a large bowl, thoroughly whisk together the flour, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
In a mixer bowl, with paddle attachment, combine butter, shortening, brown sugar, molasses and maple syrup. On medium speed, beat until well blended and lightened, about 2 minutes, being sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl at least one time. Reduce the mixer speed slightly and add the sour cream, egg and vanilla, beating until very light and fluffy, about 1 minute longer.
Beat in about half of the flour mixture, scraping down the sides of the bowl several times so release the little pockets of dry ingredients. Beat in the pumpkin just until it's smoothly incorporated. The batter will be very thick. Take your time to beat or stir in the remaining flour mixture, looking for flour pockets. Mix until smoothly incorporated, scraping down the sides as needed. Refrigerate dough for 20-30 minutes, or until slightly firm.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously grease large baking sheets with Pam. Scoop about 1/4 cup of dough onto your cookie sheet, spacing cookies about 4" apart. Spray a 3" round cookie cutter with pam and place it over the cookie dough. (I thought that this made way too big of cookies. They were just a little bit smaller than my entire hand! So, I started using about a 1 1/2" cookie cutter and less dough and it was perfect.) With one hand firmly hold the cookie cutter in place while you use your other hand to gently spread the dough out to meet the sides of the cookie cutter. Gently twist and lift the cookie cutter up and away. Bake for 12-16 minutes or until tinged with brown al over and just firm when lightly pressing the center. Transfer the sheets to wire racks and let them cook for at least 2 minutes to firm up slightly. Using a spatula, transfer to cooling rack and let cool completely.
In a small measureing cup, sprinkle the gelatin over 1/3 cup cold water. Let stand, stirring once or twice until gelatin softens, about 5 minutes.
Fit mixer with whisk attachment.
In a heavy 2 qt. saucepan, over medium high heat, stir the white sugar, corn syrup and hot water until well blended. Continue stirring and raise the heat to hight; bring to a full boil. Boil for 30 seconds. Immediately remove from heat and stir in the gelatin mixture until it dsolves completely.
VERY cafefully transfer the mixture to your mixer bowl and add the vanill. On medium speed beat for 20 seconds. (I draped a dish towel over my mixer to prevent hot splashes). Gradually raise the speed to higha nd beat until the mixture is stiffened, very white, voluminous and cooled to barely warm. This should take 5-15 minutes. Reduce the spped to low and slowly beat in the powdered sugar.
On medium speed gradualy add the cream cheese, beating just until the mixture is completely smooth. If the filling seems to runny to spread, cover and stick in the fridge until it firms up.
Lay one cookie upside down and spread some of the filling on top. Top with a second cookie, pressing down lightly so that the filling almost squeezes out the sides. This makes a ton, so after giving a bunch away, I wrapped several in wax paper and then stuck them in plastic bags and through them in the freezer. Jason just loves them still frozen, although they can be thawed before being eaten.