These cookies begin with a butter cookie dough, then a layer of pumpkin cream cheese, and finally a layer pumpkin seed streusel.
Why should pumpkin just be relegated to Thanksgiving? This recipe is perfect for using up that spare can of pumpkin puree sitting in the back of your pantry.
These cookies also give me another excuse to justify having purchased this mini cheesecake pan. You don't actually need the cheesecake pan (you can make these in a muffin tin), but they sure do look cute, don't they? You could also use a mini whoopie pie pan (I'm not admitting that I have one), or 2 inch round ring molds.
If I could just figure out another use for my Pandoro pan (check out my Pandoro). There also may be a Twinkie pan sitting in a closet in my house that somebody who shall remain nameless impulsively bought and never used.
These fat little cookies are such an elegant little treat. Don't they look perfect for a tea party?
Make ahead tips: You can assemble these cookies and freeze them in the pan, tightly wrapped, for two months, and bake them straight from the freezer. You can also freeze the baked cookies, individually wrapped, for up to two months.
Spiced Pumpkin Sablés with Pumpkin Seed Streusel
- 2 cups (272 grams) all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 2 sticks (226 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into pieces.
- 1/2 cup (100 grams) packed light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 large egg yolks, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 cup (113 grams) room temperature cream cheese
- 1/2 cup (113 grams) canned pumpkin puree
- 3/4 cup (102 grams) all purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 5 1/2 tablespoons (78 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/3 cup (43 grams) unsalted, shelled, pumpkin seeds
- To make the cookie base: Whisk the flour, cinnamon, ginger, and allspice together in a medium bowl.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer (you can also use a hand mixer), beat the butter, sugars, and salt together on medium for about 3 minutes. Add the yolks, one at a time, beating the mixture for one minute for each yolk. Beat in the vanilla.
- Turn off the mixer, remove the bowl from the mixer, and add the dry ingredients. Using a rubber spatula, mix in the dry ingredients until just slightly blended. Return the bowl to the mixer and mix until all of the flour has been just incorporated.
- Turn the dough out onto your work surface and divide it in half. Shape each half into disks, and roll each, between two pieces of wax or parchment paper, to about 1/4 inch thick. Place the dough, still in between the wax paper, on a plate, cover with plastic, and freeze for one hour, or up to 2 months.
- To make the filling: Beat the cream cheese by hand in a bowl until soft, and then beat in the pumpkin puree.
- To make the streusel: Whisk together the flour, sugars, cinnamon, and salt, either in the bowl of a stand mixer or a large bowl. Add the cubes of cold butter and mix on medium low until the mixture is clumpy and crumbly. This might take some time, up to 10 minutes. Sprinkle in the vanilla and pumpkin seeds and mix until blended. You can also mix by hand, tossing the butter in the flour mixture and rub everything together until you have a "curd-like" mixture. Cover and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours.
- When ready to assemble and bake the cookies: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F with a rack set in the center of your oven.
- Spray a mini cheesecake pan or muffin tin with spray oil. Peel the parchment paper from the chilled cookie dough disks, and cut each with a 2 inch round cookie cutter. Gather up the scraps from both, re-roll, chill, and then cut the rest of the dough.
- Place the cut cookie dough on the bottom of the cavities of your pan. Keep the extra cut cookies in the refrigerator if you have only one pan and you are baking in stages.
- Spread one teaspoon of the pumpkin cream cheese mixture onto the the cookie dough, but not all of the way to the edge. Sprinkle streusel over the top of each cookie.
- Bake the cookies for 20 to 22 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through. Let the cookies cool in the pan for 15 minutes before removing to a wire rack. Let the pan cool, and then repeat with the rest of the dough.
To me, cookies are just about the perfect dessert, so I was so excited when Dorie Greenspan, one of my all time favorite cookbook writers, released this amazing book, Dorie's Cookies last year. I have five of her books, and have probably made about 40 of her recipes. This recipe was adapted from this book, where they are called "spiced pumpkin jammers." There are also lots of other "jammers" in the book, which are butter cookies topped with jam and streusel.