Tuesday, December 15th, 2009
A couple of months ago, when my local Walmart had zero cans of pumpkin and blogs were buzzing about the so-called shortage, I stocked up on a few cans as soon as I could find them. I’ve been working my way through them slowly but surely, as you may have seen.
The beauty of canned pumpkin is that the average can contains quite enough for several batches of goodness. And when I came across this glorious-sounding recipe, it seemed like the perfect use for the half-full can sitting in my refrigerator.
My version doesn’t actually contain chocolate chips, because I didn’t have any in the house. What I did have (and still do), was a ridiculous quantity of Hershey’s kisses, so I gave them a rough chop and threw them in the bowl. The bitterness of semi-sweet or dark chocolate would probably offer an even better complement to the pumpkin’s richness, but I do what I can.
Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Squares
Adapted from Martha Stewart
It’s our general practice to sample a couple of servings of everything we bake and then take the rest to work, so that the baking habit doesn’t ruin our swimsuit figures. This round received the best reviews from our coworkers, hands down, of anything so far. They’re that good.
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter or margarine, softened
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
12 ounces coarsely chopped milk chocolate
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line bottom and sides of a 9-by-13-inch pan with foil, leaving a slight overhang on all sides. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, pie spice, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
With an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar on medium-high speed until smooth; beat in egg and vanilla until combined. Beat in pumpkin puree. Reduce speed to low, and mix in dry ingredients until just combined. Stir in chocolate.
Spread batter evenly in prepared pan. Bake until edges begin to pull away from sides of pan and a toothpick inserted in center comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool completely in pan.*
Lift cake from pan (using foil as an aid). Peel off foil, and use a sharp knife to cut into 24 squares.
*If you have time to chill the finished product in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight, it becomes much easier to cut. As an added bonus, I think they’re even more delicious cold.