In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I bring you two recipes from books: Iris's Pumpkin Spice Softies from Spells and Scones by Bailey Cates from her Magical Bakery Mystery series, and Chocolate Pecan Pie from A Slice of Humboldt Pie: Stories and Recipes.
The inspiration for this post comes from the opening of The Night Before Thanksgiving (this book is mentioned on page 2 of Spells and Scones!):
'Twas the night before Thanksgiving,
and all through the nation
families got ready
for the big celebration.
At our house my mom baked
three kids of pies:
pecan and pumkin
and apple surprise.
My husband's favorite pie is pecan pie, and I made this version one year and loved it. Could it be because there's chocolate in it?
Chocolate Pecan Pie recipe
One 9" pastry dough
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted
2 1-oz squares of unsweetened chocolate
1 cup corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup pecan pieces
Prepare pastry. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Beat sugar, melted butter, melted chocolate, corn syrup, salt and eggs with hand beater. Stir in pecans. Pour into pastry-lined pie plate. Bake until set, 40-50 minutes. Refrigerate until chilled. Refrigerate leftover pie (if there is any!)
I read Bailey Cate's book Spells and Scones and between the setting being a bakery and her mouth-watering descriptions of foods, I always had cravings for treats!
Iris's Pumpkin Spice Softies recipe
2 cups butter, softened
2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons allspice
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
15-ounce can of pumpkin
4 cups flour
4 ounces (one stick) butter, softened
8 ounces of cream cheese, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups confectioner's sugar, sifted
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Beat the butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer until fluffy - about 30-40 seconds on high speed. Add granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, allspice, giner and cinnamon. Beat until thoroughly combined. Add the eggs and vanilla, and beat on medium until combined. Mix in the pumpkin. Slowly add the flour, beating it on low until the mixture is smooth and even.
Using two spoons, drop dough onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet about two inches apart. Bake for 10-12 minutes until the tops are firm. Cool cookies on a wire rack.
For the frosting, combine softened butter and cream cheese with the vanilla extract in a mixing bowl. Beat sugar until uniform. Spread the frosting on cooled cookies with a knife for a rustic look, or use a pastry bag for a tidier appearance.
[Reprinted from Spells and Scones with permission of Obsidian, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC, 2016]
And don't forget to enjoy a good book on your Thanksgiving break with a slice of pie or cookies.