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Wednesday, November 24,2010

Toasted Walnut Pumpkin Cookies

By Danette Randall

 

Hey, all you turkeys out there, Dessert Diva here with one more pumpkin treat.

 

All good things must come to an end, and after this dessert, well, holiday baking will still be in full swing, just sans pumpkin.

This week I’m doing something simple yet delicious, spicy and nutty. Toasted Walnut Pumpkin Cookies. These little guys are great if your responsibility is the dessert for the big feast. Who needs pumpkin pie? Not us, I say.

Of course, I am always responsible for the desserts. Now that I think about it, I’m responsible for most everything on the table. All I ever ask is that my people bring the hooch. You don’t need kitchen skills to master that task, and it makes me just as happy as the turkey and stuffing does. Pettyjohn’s has my favorite Beaujolais Nouveau that only is here for a short time, so if you want to make me happy — and I know you do — please pick me up a few bottles on your way over before they are done-diddley. I would be ever so thankful.

Back to the cookie, for heaven’s sake. The intoxicating (not intoxicated) earthy smell of the pumpkin, combined with the lightly toasted walnuts, will be your favorite smell of the season. I use nutmeg, cloves and cinnamon to bring out the mild pumpkin flavor of this cookie. I dust it with powdered sugar instead of a cream cheese frosting, which is very common on pumpkin cookies. I believe they are easier to travel with that way, and I just like to enjoy the flavor and texture of the cookie without icing being the main attraction.

They are not shaped like pumpkins, by the way, just good old drop cookies with a taste explosion. This recipe is easy to whip up, and no beaters or kitchen aid required, so it might be a fun dessert to do with the kiddos. Just don’t blame me if their little hands turn orange.

Have fun baking your Thanksgiving desserts, whether you’re alone in the kitchen or surrounded by friends and family, and remember, I’m always thankful you take the time to read my little dessert diva-isms.

Now, follow the directions, put some love into it and invite me over when it’s done.


Toasted Walnut Pumpkin Cookies

2 cups flour

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1/4 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. cloves

1/2 tsp. allspice

3/4 cup softened butter

1 cup granulated sugar

1 egg

1/2 tsp. almond extract

1/2 cup pure pumpkin

3/4 cup toasted walnuts (chop and place on baking sheet at 350 degrees for 5-7 minutes)

Powdered sugar for dusting Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Lightly grease a baking sheet (or cover with parchment paper). In small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, cloves and allspice and set aside.

In large bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Add egg and almond extract. Stir in pumpkin until well combined. Fold in flour until dough forms. Add walnuts.

Drop by tablespoons onto prepared baking sheet and gently press dough down. Bake for 9-10 minutes until edges just start to brown. Take off sheet and cool on wire rack or parchment paper. Dust with powdered sugar. Enjoy!

You can watch the Dessert Diva every Monday at 8:35 a.m. on Channel 2. To contact Danette at the station, visit 2thedeuce.com, and click on Daybreak on the Deuce. To chat and/or send comments and suggestions, write to jdromega@aol.com.

Respond: letters@boulderweekly.com

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