Wow, it finally feels like fall around here. Not only is it cool and pleasant, it's been raining cats and dogs! This is what it's like to have seasons. After last year's endless summer, I'd almost given up.
Anyway, I was in the mood to celebrate with an autumn themed chocolate chip cookie cake (aka "cookie pizza" ) made with fall colored M&Ms, but decided to try a pumpkin version instead. Using my old cookie cake recipe as a start, I halved it, used dark brown sugar in place of granulated, then added pumpkin pie spice and canned pumpkin. Since I didn't need a huge 14 or 16 inch cookie pizza, I used two standard 9 inch cake pans and made two medium size cookie pizzas. The medium size were great because a) I had two, so I could decorate one and leave another for Fuzz to decorate and b) they were easier to deal with. They fit on standard size plates and could be moved around easier than a 14 or 16 inch cookie pizza.
For the frosting, I used my old standby which is based on the one from the side of the Domino confectioners' sugar box. In hindsight, I really should have used cream cheese frosting and am not quite sure what I was thinking since pumpkin always goes great with cream cheese, but the butter frosting was fine and the cookie pizzas were a hit with the family. They are on the sweet side, so if you like nuts, you might want to add them to cut the sweetness of the cookies.
Pumpkin Cookie Pizza
- 1 stick 4 ounces unsalted butter or margarine*
- ¾ cup lightly packed dark brown sugar
- ½ scant cup canned pumpkin puree
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- ¼ tsp baking soda
- ⅜ tsp salt or ¼ tsp if using salted butter or margarine*
- 1 cup plus 3 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- ½ cup toasted and chopped pecans or walnuts
- 1 cup white chips or butterscotch chips
- ½ cup unsalted butter softened
- 3 ¾ cup confectioners' sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2-4 tablespoons whole milk or more as needed
- Pinch of salt or as needed
- Preheat oven to 300° F. Line 2 9 inch round metal cake pans with nonstick foil.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, beat the butter and brown sugar until creamy. Beat in the pumpkin, egg and vanilla, beating only until mixed.
- Scrape sides of bowl and beat in the pumpkin pie spice, salt and baking soda, scraping sides of bowl as needed.
- By hand or with lowest speed of mixer, gradually stir in the flour.
- Stir in white chips and nuts.
- Divide the sticky dough in half and put half in the center of each pan. Using a rubber scraper, pat it into an 8 or 8 ½ inch circle so that you have about ½ inch of space between the dough and the edge of the pan -- it should spread.
- Bake on center rack for 35 to 40 minutes, however CHECK EARLIER as per the note from the commenter who said hers were too dark after 35 minutes. And remember to bake at 300, not 350 or until cookies appear set.
- Set on a cooling rack and let cool completely before frosting. When ready to frost, lift from pan by grasping foil.
- To make the frosting, beat the butter in a large mixing bowl until creamy. Gradually add the confectioners' sugar, then beat in the vanilla. Add milk 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until frosting is creamy and smooth. Add salt. Put it in a decorator's bag fitted with the tip of your choice and pipe around the edges.