Thursday, October 7, 2010

A Sign of Fall: Pumpkin Cookies

Our pumpkin cookie tradition began when K14 was a toddler and we lived in New York.  Back then, I didn't know that pumpkin could come in any form except canned.  I didn't equate the beautiful orange globes with the pies I loved.  The magic that it took to turn one into the other was totally beyond my comprehension.  I was a different person with different focus and different interests.  Even so, I still craved a way to mark time, to celebrate it's passing with ritual and intention. 

And so the ritual of the pumpkin cookies as a sign of autumn was born.  Over the years we've tweaked the recipe.  Not a single one of my children likes their cookies polluted with raisins so early on we swapped raisins for chocolate chips.  As what my children eat and where it comes from has become more important to me, I've learned to make my own pumpkin puree.  Who knows, maybe next year I'll even grow it myself.  That is assuming that Rob won't mow the pumpkin plants, again.  However we choose to make our cookies, the act is a seasonal highlight.  We mark time with this ritual of  measuring, mixing and tasting together.

First Sign of Fall Pumpkin Cookies

2 1/4 c sugar
3/4 c vegetable shortening
2 eggs
2 t vanilla
2 c pumpkin puree
1 1/4 t baking soda
4 c flour
4 t baking powder
1/2 t ginger
1/2 t cinnamon
1/2 t allspice
1/4 t cloves
2 c chocolate chips

Cream together sugar, shortening, eggs, vanilla and pumpkin.  Add dried ingredients, alternating flour with spices and mix well.  Stir in chocolate chips.  Drop by teaspoonful onto non-greased cookie sheet and bake at 375F for 8 to 10 minutes, until lightly brown.  Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack to cool.


  1. Before we went gluten free I made a really good chocolate chip pumpkin muffin! Yum! How did the baking of the pumpkin go? I'm thinking of getting a few more pumpkins this week and can't steam them all....

  2. Baking is great! It's the only way I've ever processed pumpkin for pies and such.

  3. Good to hear... I've always steamed, but I just picked up 4 more pie pumpkins so I'm not steaming all of them! I'll try baking this week... thanks!