Wednesday, October 28, 2009


These little unassuming cookies are wonderful. They've been sitting on my counter all day and they are still so soft (almost cake like). The recipe makes five dozen velvety cookies that taste like pumpkin pie and have a rich brown sugar glaze on them. They would be an excellent holiday cookie and the recipe says they freeze well (unfrosted). They will never win a beauty contest, but man-o-man are they tasty. I think next time I make them (and hubby says there will be a next time) I'll put a couple drops of orange food coloring in the dough.

2 cups butter, room temperature
2 cups white sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
(1) 15 ounce can of pumpkin
4 cups flour

In a large bowl, beat 2 cups of butter with electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices. Beat until well combined, scraping the bowl occasionally. Add the eggs and vanilla, beat well, then beat in the pumpkin. Add as much flour as you can with the mixer, and if necessary, use a wooden spoon to add the rest of the flour (my stand mixer mixed it all just fine...but it IS a lot of dough).

Drop by heaping teaspoons on un-greased cookie sheet (2" apart). They don't spread much at all. Bake in preheated 350 oven for 10-12 minutes (I baked mine 11 minutes they don't change color much - just bake them until the tops are set). Cool on wire racks and frost. Brown Sugar Frosting: ½ cup of butter + ½ cup of brown sugar + ¼ cup of milk + 1 teaspoon vanilla. Heat those ingredients in a saucepan until the sugar is melted and smooth. Transfer to a bowl and add 2¾ cups of powdered sugar. Whisk smooth and frost cookies.

After the frosting has "set", you can store the cookies in a single layer in an airtight container at room temperature for three days or freeze the unfrosted cookies for up to 3 months.

NOTE: These cookies are VERY soft, almost like a little mini-cake.

The leaves have been off of our trees for quite a while now and this morning we woke up to an inch of snow which melted quickly. However, in this color-less time of year, there is a hardy little plant that can withstand hard frosts and just keeps blooming and blooming for me. I have several of them right outside my front door just so I can enjoy them this time of year, they are called Cinquefoils.

Last night, about midnight, our dog, Chloe, started growling under her breath. The kind of growl that tells us she's too afraid to really bark. We went to the front window and low and behold there were THREE very small/young moose (probably triplets) standing on our sidewalk and munching away on my beloved cinquefoils!! Even here in Alaska, being less than a foot away from any moose is not an every day occurance...but triplet "moose-lets"? It was a real treat and I happily donated my Cinquefoils to these little babies. I got my camera and walked up to the window as quietly as possible, knowing that ANY noise would spook them away. It was very dark out and for some reason my porch light didn't come on when the moose walked up, so I knew I would have to use a flash. I placed the camera lense right on the glass hoping to reduce the flash reflection. I had only one chance for a photo (because they would be gone instantly when they saw the flash) but it was worth a shot. The photo is a terrible one, but I still wanted to share it with you. The little triplet moose were so cute. I'm sure their mother was near by, but I wasn't going to check. Getting between a mother moose and her babies is something that is extremely dangerous. As soon as the camera flashed, all three little guys were g-o-n-e! They acutally missed one Cinquefoil plant (the above photo), so I am hoping they will come back again tonight. They are also welcome to our pumpkin (moose love pumpkins).

Sorry for the poor photo

You can see this brave little moose, and the leg of her sibling on the left. The third moose is to her right; when we first saw them, all three were shoulder to shoulder on our front steps, if only it were daylight, I could have gotten a good shot. They were about the size of a Great Dane (as adults they will be over a thousand pounds).


Sheila said...

Oh I miss seeing moose in our yard. We lived on Elmendorf for 7 years and the moose were plentiful there. Sometimes they would look right in the window at you. By the way, I found you blog a while ago and don't think I have ever commented. Just wanted to say that I love your recipes and tidbits about Alaska. Thanks!!! Sheila in NC now!!

Donna-FFW said...

Moose in your yard, holy cow, most I see in my yard is a squirrel.

The cookies look so pretty and faestive. Like mini pumpkin tea cakes.

Sonya said...

WOW baby Moose!!! that is just amazing..They dont have anything like that over here in the netherlands..we have hedgehogs and I have yet to spot those.

The cookies look soo good! I love cake like cookies.

thedomesticmama said...

I love that we live in such extreme places- but that we can share the everyday stories that make our regions so special. I don't think I will ever have a moose (or 3!) at my back door- or snow, for that matter. But I live vicariosly through you. :)

Jessie said...

Those cookies looks wonderful and how fun to have that kind of wildlife wonder into your yard!!

Peggy Clyde. said...

Thanks again for another great cookie recipe. Cookies are my weakness.

Debbie said...

Oh I absolutely love the picture of the baby moose. So cute. I'd be thrilled to have some at my door...I don't care how many of my plants they would eat either!!! The cookies look the decorations on them!

betty r said...

Love the story..and baby moose, that's amazing!
The cookies look delicious!

Lara said...

Those cookies look so fun and festive. I love those little autumn sprinkles too.

what a fun surprise seeing the triplet babies right there in your yard. We get excited when we see a fox or a deer, but a moose is really exciting!

Katy ~ said...

Once in a great while we see moose here, but I've never seen three at a time. I think I'd have palpitations if I saw them in my yard.

Coleen, these cookies sound terrific. Sounds like this is a delicious recipe to save and savor!

Cinnamon-Girl Reeni♥ said...

How cute! I have deer that come up to my house looking for nibbles. The pumpkin cookies sound scrumptious! Love the brown sugar glaze!

Mary said...

How dear! Your cookies look wonderful, but then everything you do looks wonderful.

Wandering Coyote said...

I love moose! What a great capture! We have them around here, too, but they are shy and I haven't seen one recently. My dad comes by one every so often when he's out hiking, but I don't have his luck!

The cookies look really cute and I love colourful decorations.

frugal southern mom said...

Hey Coleen!
I found you on Katy's blog. I love the moose. The only time I have seen one is in a zoo! We have alot of deer here in the south.
Your cookies sound really good.

teresa said...

holy cow, what a great story! i love alaska!

the cookies look so good, pumpkin cookies are the best, especially this time of year!

Foodie with Little Thyme! said...

WOW! amazing story. The most I get here in the suburbs is baby bird! Too cool! Thanks for sharing! Oh and I almost forgot I think the cookies are very pretty and sound very tasty!

Krista said...

"velvety cookies that taste like pumpkin pie and have a rich brown sugar glaze on them" Whoa! You had me at "hello" with these! They sound amazing.

How cool that a moose...or three moose might just wander up to your backdoor! My kids would flip!

Monica H said...

Oh wow what an amazing sight. That is too cool. We have bunnies here, the occasional frog and owls and opossums but not moose!

A Full-Timed Housefly said...

Moose in your yard , WOW that is something unusual to me ! we only have wild monkeys and sunbirds visitng our house sometimes... BTW your cookies look so vibrant and pretty , thanks for sharing.