Enjoying pumpkin desserts as much as I do, I got it into my head to try my hand at turning my favorite blondies recipe into pumpkin blondies. My first attempt was close but no cigar, and I won’t bore you with the details. After rehashing my attempt with Juan, my friend and fellow foodie at work, I tried a second time and got a good news/bad news result. The good news is that I came up with a mighty tasty dessert. The bad news is that they don’t quite have the texture of a blondie. So, I had to come up with a new name for them!
The texture is more cake-like than brownie/blondie-like, but pumpkin squares is a kind of boring name for them. I have to thank Roger’s friend, Jeff, for the creative name. Roger frequently meets Jeff for coffee and often brings along a sampling of one of my latest desserts. When Jeff saw the way the cinnamon chips had melted and exploded in the squares, he said it looked like a cinnamon galaxy. There you have it. (Thanks, Jeff!)
If you compare the original recipe for blondies with my adaptation, you’ll see that I cut back on the butter to compensate for adding the pumpkin purée. Then I did a little math to come up with a spice combo I liked based on my favorite pumpkin bread. After that, it was just a matter of swapping cinnamon chips for the chocolate chips. I am my own worst critic—but, if I do say so myself, they are quite good.
I am going to make one more attempt to come up with a pumpkin blondie that meets my expectations. It’s either going to be third time’s the charm—or strike three, you’re out! At least strike two on the pumpkin blondies turned out to be a home run for the pumpkin squares.
Cinnamon Galaxy Pumpkin Squares
- 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), melted and cooled
- 1 1/2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
- 1 cup pumpkin purée (not pumpkin pie mix)
- 3 eggs
- 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. allspice
- 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp. cloves
- 1 cup cinnamon chips (can substitute butterscotch chips)
In large bowl, combine sugar and melted butter; mix well with wooden spoon (can use a mixer if you prefer). Mix in pumpkin purée. Add eggs one at a time and vanilla; mix well. Combine flour, baking powder, and spices. Add to sugar mixture and incorporate until smooth. Stir in cinnamon chips.
Bake at 350o for 30 to 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. (My squares were perfect at 33 minutes.) Cool completely before cutting.
Source: Adapted from Wilton’s blonde brownies recipe