Posts Tagged ‘pumpkin’

“Pumpkin Pie” Pancakes

Sunday, December 20th, 2009

This recipe comes from the Weight Watchers Comfort Classics cookbook, just like those Ham & Cheese quiches. Can I say that this is my favorite Weight Watchers cookbook? Because it is. Normally, I’m not too impressed with Weight Watchers official recipes–they tend to be too bland for my tastes. But so far, we’ve tried the Pumpkin Pie Pancakes, the Mini-Quiches, the Macaroni & Cheese, the Oven-Fried Chicken with Sage Gravy, and the Tandoori Chicken, and all were very tasty.

But out of all of the ones we’ve tried these pancakes were my favorite so far.

These were good enough to order in a restaurant. In fact, there’s a pumpkin pancake that Leah and I love at our local brunch spot, the Bongo Room, and these rivaled those tasty cakes–for what I’m certain is a fraction of the points. The only thing missing is the Bongo Room’s amazing vanilla bean sauce. Next time I make these pancakes, I think I’d try to make something along those lines.

pumpkin pancakes

“Pumpkin Pie” Pancakes
Adapted from Weight Watchers Comfort Classics, Serves 4

  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/3 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 4 teaspoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 tablespoons maple syrup

1. Whisk together the all-purpose and whole-wheat flours, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk the buttermilk, pumpkin, butter, and egg in another bowl until blended. Add the flour mixture to the buttermilk mixture, stirring just until blended.

2. Spray a large nonstick griddle with nonstick spray and set over medium heat. When a drop of water sizzles on it, pour the batter onto the skillet by scant 1/4 cupfuls. Cook just until bubbles begin to appear at the edges of the pancakes, 2-3 minutes. Flip and cook until golden, 2-3 minutes longer. Repeat with the remaining batter, making a total of 8 pancakes. Serve with the maple syrup.

Nutritional Info: (Serving = 2 pancakes with 1 tablespoon maple syrup) 222 Cal, 6 g Fat, 2 g Fiber. Points: 5

Halloween Brownie Bites

Wednesday, October 28th, 2009

These tasty mini-treats are perfect for bringing along to a halloween party, especially if you’re looking for a healthy option. They’re still brownies, but they’re actually very low-fat and have a decent amount of fiber due to the added pumpkin. (Don’t worry, they don’t taste anything like pumpkin!)

I’m not always a big fan of these low-fat baking tricks, but this one worked out very well. Perhaps because I started with a good quality brownie mix (mmm…Ghirardhelli!)

photo(6)

Halloween Brownie Bites
Makes 48 mini-muffin sized brownies

  • 1 standard brownie mix
  • 15 ounce can of pumpkin puree
  • 2 egg whites
  • sprinkles or walnuts (optional)

1. Preheat your oven according to the package directions on your brownie mix. Lightly spray a mini-muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray, or line with mini-cupcake wrappers. Set aside.

2. Using a the paddle attachment on your stand mixer, beat together the pumpkin puree and egg whites until well combined. Add the brownie mix  and continue to beat on medium until the dry mix is fully incorporated. Important: Do not add anything else to the mix, no matter what the back of the box says. No oil. No whole eggs. No water. The batter will be very thick, but that’s okay.

3. Scoop into mini-muffin pans. I had enough batter to fill my 24-cup pan twice, and just baked two batches. If you have two mini-muffin tins, you could probably do both at the same time. If you plan to use any nuts or sprinkles, now is the time to add them. I used orange sprinkles  on one pan, and I pressed a walnut half into the top of each mini brownie in the other pan.

4. Bake according to package directions, adjusting the cook time if your package doesn’t call for mini-muffins. The mix I used wanted to be cooked for 40 minutes in a 9×13 pan, but the mini-muffins only took 20 minutes. Just keep a close eye on them. Allow to rest in the pan for 5 minutes or so, then remove to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.

Note: The nutritional information based on the mix that I used and the directions above is 55 calories, 1 gram of fat, and .5 grams of fiber per brownie bite.


Follow Up: The Ultimate Autumn Cookie?

Wednesday, October 21st, 2009
So, last week, Cara and I tried to bake an oatmeal chocolate chip cookie she’d had once–but all she knew was that the recipe had pumpkin in it. So I researched recipes, but then the store didn’t have pumpkin. You can see how that turned out here. Cara decided to try again, and has been kind enough to share the results here. I tried these “cookies” last night, and they were quite tasty, but at the complete opposite end of the spectrum from the crispy cookies. These were soft, and fluffy–more like a muffin than a cookie.
Anyway, Cara’s here to tell you the story of her muffin-top cookies:

Ok, so that title is a little vague because I didn’t want anyone who doesn’t like pumpkin to not click. I generally don’t even like pumpkin myself! Or so I thought. But that was until I had these magnificent Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies, introduced to me by an ex-boyfriend.

These puppies are meant to be soft and chewy, bordering on almost cake-like (but not quite) – in other words, the perfect cookie, IMO. Since the ex and I didn’t really stay ~friends~ (hahaha… wait, that’s not funny, is it?), I did some Googling to try to find a similar cookie recipe… and found several different ones. I ultimately ended up Frankensteining a few – perfect for Halloween, am I right?! – to create this delicious fall treat. 🙂

Ingredients:

  • 1 can pumpkin (15 oz.)  (Note: most recipes list 1 cup; I accidentally used the whole can, but they taste great!)
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup quick or old-fashioned oats
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon (I used 1 tsp. Saigon cinnamon & 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice – whatever you prefer)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. milk
  • 1 T. vanilla
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • cream cheese icing (optional)

Yield: about 3 dozen

Combine pumpkin, sugar, oil, and egg in large bow. Mix well.
(Oil will separate; just re-stir before you need to add more ingredients later in the recipe.)

In another, smaller bowl, combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.

Dissolve baking soda with milk, then stir into flour mixture. Next stir in oats.

Mix together flour mixture with pumpkin, slowly adding more flour mix and stirring each time. Mixture will thicken. You should be able to stick your spoon in the middle and have it stand up on its own.

Add vanilla and chocolate chips.

Bake at 350 on a greased cookie sheet for 10-12 minutes until tops of cookies are dry and spring back when touched lightly (I find 12 mins. on the nose is perfect). Remove from baking sheet and cool on racks.

If you like, while cookies are still slightly warm, ice them with the cream cheese icing (I used the Pillsbury whipped variety). The warm cookie and the melty icing is perfection. Seriously. I’ve never iced them all and then eaten the pre-iced cookies later, so I’m not sure how that would taste, but I have nuked a cook or two in the microwave for a little bit and then iced them to re-create that fresh-out-of-the-oven goodness. Works pretty well actually.

These “cookies” were so moist and crumbly they tasted like the top of a really delicious muffin. Definitely muffintop-ish.

Your turn! Hope you enjoy – let me know if you do!

pumpkin cookie
Thanks for stopping by, Cara. And extra thanks for bringing leftover cookies last night. Yum!