Maple Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

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In food blogger world, it’s a cardinal sin to go through the entire month of October without posting a pumpkin dessert.  We here at The Table prefer to avoid such transgressions whenever possible, so we’re providing our obligatory pumpkin dessert early in the month.  And holy cow, is this a good one!

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My sister found this recipe four or five years ago, and it’s been circulating throughout the family ever since.  The pumpkin cake discs pair so nicely with the maple marshmallow flavoring that it’s no surprise we keep making them.  I have no idea where the original recipe came from, though.  If anyone knows the source, please clue me in so I can give credit where fabulous credit is due.

There are two possible drawbacks to the recipe.  1) The recipe makes a lot – around 20 medium-sized pies.  If this is more than you want, never fear!  They freeze well.  Wrap them individually in saran wrap and store them in a freezer bag.  2) Maple pumpkin whoopie pies are madly addicting.

Maple Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

For the filling:
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
1 7-oz jar marshmallow cream
2 tsp. maple extract or maple flavoring

For the cake:
3 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 tsp. nutmeg
3/4 tsp. ground cloves
6 tbs. unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 15-oz can pumpkin puree
1/2 cup milk

1. Make the filling: Using a mixer, beat the powdered sugar and butter in a large bowl for about 2 minutes, or until fluffy.  Add the marshmallow cream and maple extract and beat until smooth. (The filling can be made up to two hours ahead and left to stand in a cool place.)

2. Make the cake discs: Preheat the oven to 350 F.  Stir together the first seven ingredients (flour through cloves) in a medium-sized bowl.

3. In a large bowl, beat the butter and both sugars until blended.  Add the oil, and beat until blended.  Add the eggs one at a time, beating between additions and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.  Add the pumpkin, and beat until blended, scraping down the sides of the bowl.

4. Add half of the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture, and beat until just blended.  Add the milk and briefly beat.  Add the remaining dry ingredients and beat just until blended.  Cover the batter and chill for two hours.

5. Place one oven rack in the bottom third of the oven, and a second in the top third.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and spray with nonstick cooking spray.  Scoop the batter onto the trays to make medium-sized cake discs, with about 2-3 tbs. of batter per disc, spacing them apart.  Put one tray on the bottom oven rack and the other on the top rack. Bake the discs for about 20 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean, rotating pans top to bottom midway through.  Repeat with the remaining batter.

6. When the cake discs have cooled, sandwich two of them with a generous amount of the maple marshmallow filling.  And make a firm resolution to just…eat…one.

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