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Monday, November 8, 2010

Two FUN Thanksgiving Desserts

Mini Pumpkin Cakes
from: Southern Living

Delicious pumpkin flavor and pumpkin pie spices make this treat a yummy way to celebrate the season. With only 30 minutes of hands-on time it's doable for a special dinner party or just a fun treat for the kids.

Hands-On Time: 30 min.; Total Time: 1 hr., 44 min. (including Caramel-Rum Glaze).

Yield: Makes 8 pumpkins


  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 (8-oz.) package cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Caramel-Rum Glaze*
  • Or Vanilla Glaze
  • Caramel Stems, Leaves, and Vines (optional, instructions below)


1. Preheat oven to 350°. Beat butter and cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Stir in pumpkin and vanilla.

2. Combine flour and next 4 ingredients; gradually add to butter mixture, beating at low speed just until blended. Spoon batter into 2 lightly greased pumpkin-shaped muffin pans, filling three-fourths full.

3. Bake at 350° for 24 to 26 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 5 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks, and cool completely (about 30 minutes).

4. Cut rounded tops off muffins to make them flat. Invert top muffins onto bottom muffins, forming pumpkins. Drizzle Caramel-Rum Glaze over pumpkins. Decorate with Caramel Stems, Leaves, and Vines, if desired.

*Vanilla Glaze may be substituted.

CARAMEL STEM: Press 1 caramel between fingers, lengthening to 1 1/2 to 2 inches to form a stem. Curl stem gently.

CARAMEL LEAVES: Roll caramels into 2-inch squares on a flat surface, using a rolling pin. Cut into leaves, using a paring knife. Gently press tips of leaves to flatten, if desired. Score leaves, using a paring knife. Pinch bottoms of leaves together.

CARAMEL VINES: Cut 1 caramel into 3 equal pieces. Squeeze each piece gently to flatten, and roll between hands or on a flat surface into a long thin rope. Twist ends to curl.

Note: We tested with Wilton Dimensions Multi-Cavity Mini Pumpkin Pans. Only have one pan? Bake batter in two batches, washing and drying pan between batches.

A Flock Of Turkeys

from: Taste Of Home

"Making a gaggle of these gobblers is a fun project to do with kids," suggests Zoraya Jennings of Fredericksburg, Virginia. Her cute, easy turkey cookies make great school treats or sweet favors for a Thanksgiving gathering.


  • 48 sugar cookies (3 inches)
  • 1 package (12 ounces) chocolate and marshmallow cookies
  • 1 can (16 ounces) chocolate frosting
  • 1 cup vanilla frosting
  • Yellow and red paste food coloring
  • Using a serrated knife, cut 1/2 in. from one side of 24 sugar cookies. Using a sharp knife, cut marshmallow cookies in half vertically. Spread chocolate frosting over the bottom of each marshmallow cookie half; align cut edges of a marshmallow cookie and a sugar cookie, and press together to form each turkey body and feathers.
  • Spread chocolate frosting over the cut edges of each turkey; position and attach near the back edge of a whole sugar cookie.
  • Cut a small hole in the corner of a pastry or plastic bag. Insert a #12 round pastry tip; fill bag with 3/4 cup chocolate frosting. Pipe a neck and head on each turkey.
  • Tint 1/2 cup vanilla frosting yellow and 1/2 cup red. With a #3 round pastry tip and yellow frosting, add eyes, beaks and legs. With #3 round tip and red frosting, pipe snood and tail feathers. Store in the refrigerator. Yield: 2 dozen.

    Editor's Note: This recipe was tested with Nabisco Pinwheels.

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