Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Let's Make Whoopie... But Not Really

What is with the name Whoopie Pies? When I told Glenn and my brother what these were called, they both laughed at me. Quite honestly, it's embarrassing to say. That's probably because on the old Newlywed Game the host always talked about "makin whoopie." Ewww.... what a creepy thing to say. I really am curious where on earth the name for these cookies came from. Let's see if Wikipedia has anything to say about these.

Unfortunately, wiki is really of no help other than telling me that the cookies are of Pennsylvania Dutch origin and are commonly known as "gobs." Okay, what else can we find?

What's Cooking America gives us a little more in depth account of these strangely named "pies." These treats are more like cake than they are cookies or pies. They are traditionally very large, almost hamburger sized. People in Maine like to claim that they were weaned on Whoopie Pies (obviously these are very well loved there.) The most common flavor is chocolate but people love to experiment with seasonal flavors. An interesting fact is that an authentic whoopie pie is made with vegetable shortening and not butter. Yuck. I will stick with butter. In an effort to be economical, the Amish people originally made these using leftover batter. And finally, according to Amish legend, when Amish children discovered these treats in their lunch bags, they shouted "Whoopie!"

And there you have it my friends. I have to say I feel better knowing all that. I just knew it had to have some sort of interesting origin. It's a strange name. I actually kinda sorta like it now. Anyway, my inspiration for making these was a lone can of pumpkin in the pantry and my mom wondering why I wasn't bringing dessert to dinner, when she assumed it was a given. As a side note, I was told my dad freaked out when he heard I wasn't bringing anything and ran out to the store and bought two pies. I was told I didn't need to because Glenn's mom was taking care of everything. I decided to make them Thanksgiving morning about 2 hours before we left. Yay!

I whipped these up really quickly. From start to finish, I think it only took me an hour and a half, and that includes cooling and assembly. The batter is really easy to mix together, the filling is easy, cooktime is short, and if you throw them in the fridge, cooling time is fast too. These really are nice little treats. They are simple, soft, and sweet. It's nice to have a quick standby if you ever need to make something a tad bit more impressive than plain ol cookies.

Recipe from Cooking with Anne

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Whoopie Pies
Note: I scooped mine smaller and ended up with about 2 dozen 50 cent piece sized complete "pies" I also did not have pumpkin pie spice so I added 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon and a 1/8 teaspoon of nutmeg.

Cakes:

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter - melted
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

Filling:

1/2 stick butter
4 oz. cream cheese
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Mix together melted butter, brown sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla, pie spice and eggs until smooth. Add flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Mix well until a thick batter forms. Drop by spoonful onto parchment lined cookie sheets. You need 24 cakes for 12 pies. Bake at 350 degrees F for 15 - 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center of cakes comes out clean. Cool completely and make filling.

Blend softened butter and cream cheese with vanilla. Add powdered sugar and stir until smooth. Fold in chocolate chips. Spread on 12 cakes and top each with another cake.

1 comment:

happytummy said...

oooh pumpkin and chocolate are always a great combo, but adding the creamy filling takes it to another level. i made pumpkin chocolate chip cookies the other day...i'm thinking these whoopie pies are the way to go next time. looks great!

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