by Dea Castrejon
After graduating from college, I had an awesome opportunity to live in New York City. For a native California girl, this was a dream come true! I absolutely loved it there! When it comes to food in the Big Apple, I think you could spend your whole life there and still not uncover all of its gems! Anyway, when I lived there, one of my favorite places to treat myself was a small bakery down the block from my apartment, called Two Little Ren Hens Bakery. During the fall/winter season, they carried a seasonal cupcake: a pumpkin cupcake with an apricot cream cheese frosting. I am not a huge pumpkin fan (generally speaking), but wow, this is by far my most missed treat from that city! For our cookie exchange, I thought it would be fun to try to replicate this treat in a cookie form. Here we go!
Pumpkin & Hazelnut Cookies with Apricot Cream Cheese Frosting
*makes 4 dozen cookies
- 2 cups butter, softened
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 2 eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 15-ounce can pumpkin
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup chopped hazelnuts (optional)
Apricot Cream Cheese Frosting:
- ½ cup butter, slightly softened
- 2 (8-oz) package 1/3 fat cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 8 Tablespoons Apricot reserve/jam
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a mixing bowl, beat 2 cups butter until fluffy. Add sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Mix until thoroughly combined. Next, add eggs and vanilla extract; mix this in until combined. Add pumpkin. Finally, add the flour slowly until incorporated. Dough will be more wet than most cookie batters.
- Scoop a heaping tablespoon for each cookie onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack and let cool.
- While the cookies are baking, beat together all frosting ingredients until thoroughly whipped. Frost the cookies once they are completely cooled.