When I told the boys we were making Whoopie Pies they cracked up. I guess "whoopie" sounds a lot like potty talk and you know how funny potty talk is to elementary age boys! Once they quit laughing they asked "Is that really what their called?" Yep.
Disclaimer!Now, before you start thinking "Wow! What a great mom to get in the kitchen with her boys and let them have at it!" Let me tell ya somethin'...it was excruciating! If you know me, perhaps you already know I am a control freak! This whole idea of letting my boys bake is tough for me. But, I stood back and gave verbal instructions and let them do it by themselves.
They actually washed their hands without me having to tell them to!
This is what you'll need:
2 cups light brown sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 (15 oz) can pumpkin
3 cups flour
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice (**recipe follows)
1 teaspoon baking powder (**recipe follows)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
Filling/Cream Cheese Frosting
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 to 5 cups confectioners' sugar
Here's what you do:
Step 1: Heat the oven to 350F. Take a deep breath and read first part of recipe to boys; "Beat the eggs, brown sugar, oil and vanilla extract in a mixing bowl until smooth. Stir in the pumpkin. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the egg mixture a half cup at a time, blending each time until smooth." Heartbeat a bit elevated but still under control. Focus on breathing.
They took turns cracking the eggs.
Easy does it!
What was I thinking? This could have ended up all over the place!
This is what we ended up with.
Step 2: Take another deep breath and remind yourself that they are having fun and so are you. Read next step of the recipe; "Drop a heaping tablespoon of batter onto an ungreased cookie sheet, using a moist finger or the back of a spoon to slightly flatten each mound. Bake the cookies for 12 minutes, then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely." Okay, starting to freak out now. Controlled breathing...
It took everything I had to watch this and not take over! These are supposed to be round...ish!
Little Brother doesn't look too impressed.
What a sight!
"Are they almost done?"
Step 3: I'm feeling a little light headed. Is this normal? Am I the only one who's hot right now? Keep breathing. Distract kids with something else. Read next step...to myself; "Meanwhile, make the frosting. Beat together the cream cheese, butter and vanilla extract in a bowl until light and fluffy. Mix in the confectioners' sugar a half cup at a time, until the frosting is spreadable." (The recipe calls for more sugar than I think you need or can even get incorporated. I say, find a taste and consistency you like and go with that.)
Now, I think I'm doing a good thing here...letting my boys bake. All by themselves. And this is what I get:
"Can I go now?"
Good stuff, Mom!
Oh sure, now he's interested!
Step 4: Breathing has returned to normal. Kids are happy with licking the beater. Casually read next step to self; "To assemble the pies, turn half off the cookies bottom side up and spread a generous amount of cream cheese frosting on each one. Top them with the remaining cookies (turned right side up)." (The recipe says it makes 10 to 14. We ended up with 20. The ones they boys made were smaller than the ones I made. I have to admit that I liked the small ones better. These cookies are sooooo rich, one small cookie is more than enough.)
My #1 taste tester!
**Okay, I don't know about you but I hate having a bunch of containers of spices floating around in my cabinet...there are enough in there already! So I decided, why do I keep pumpkin pie spice and baking powder on hand when I have separate containers of the ingredients used to make them? Now I just make them as I need them. An added bonus; I've noticed a difference in the texture and loft of my baked goods now that I make my baking powder fresh!
So here are the recipes I use:
To make 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice:
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon allspice or ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
To make 1 teaspoon baking powder:
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
5/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
I guess this recipe is a keeper!
And you know what? We did have a good time. In fact, I think we'll do something like this again!