Killer Pumpkin Bars
I love fall! Fall is my favorite season! I used to love Spring because that meant the beginning of summer, the beginning of the tanning season and the shedding of sweaters to show off the ever present bronze glow I kept all summer and fall. These days, the only bronze I have comes from a tube, and regrettably, I kinda like the extra cover of the sweaters.
Fall is also the prime time for Festivals and I do love a good Fall Festival! The Lilburn Women's club is hosting their 38th year of Lilburn Daze, which happens every 2nd Saturday in October. There will be over 200 booths and snack shacks to rumble through. I will be on quest to find Fried Pickles, because they are my favorite festival food indulgence!
Fall also signals the beginning of pumpkin season for me, for I love all things pumpkin! Pumpkin Spice lattes, Pumpkin Ice Cream, Pumpkin Smoothies (just found a recipe for this one - can't wait to make it) But, my favorite has to be the Killer Pumpkin Bars, a recipe I got from my "cyber friend" ChefBeck from the Contessa's Kitchen Board. As a matter of fact, Chefbeck has quite the reputation for her "Pumpkin Love" on our board, and has been fondly dubbed "Queen of the Pumpkins." I think in her book, there is no such thing as TOO MANY pumpkins!
I just happened to have 3 cans of Pumpkin that I had in my pantry from last winter, Found last winter in a "clearance buggy" for .58 a can. There were only 3 cans left or I would gotten all that had! So, last Friday I decided to make my first batch of the season. Started getting all my ingredients together and discovered I only had 2 eggs - no worries, half a recipe of Pumpkin Bars is better than NO Pumpkin Bars! If you love pumpkin, I encourage you to make this recipe!
Killer Pumpkin Bars
courtesy of ChefBeck
2 cups sugar
1 cup butter (2 sticks), room temp
2 cups canned pumpkin (one 15 oz can)
4 eggs, room temp
2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp each - cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, ginger, ground cloves
1/2 tsp salt
preheat to 350. Lightly grease 15 x 10 1/2 x 1 pan. Sift flour, baking soda, spices and salt together; set aside. Cream butter and sugar til smooth. Add pumpkin and eggs; beat til smooth. Add dry ingredients and mix until well combined. Spread mixture into pan. Bake for about 25 minutes (or until cake springs back when touch or toothpick comes out clean) Cool completely and frost.
Icing (see cook's notes)
3 oz cream cheese, room temp
1 stick bitter, room temp
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp orange zest (optional)
2 cups powdered sugar
Beat together until smooth.
As I said, this recipe can be easily halved.
I encourage you to make this with the icing recipe above - it is just divine and if I was making this for an event I would not change a thing! !
However, this time I lightened it up a bit. I beat 8 oz FF cream cheese, 1/2 a tub of light cool whip and 3 TBS powdered sugar, vanilla and cinnamon. I discovered that a" less sweetened" icing really enhanced the pumpkin taste.
So get out and enjoy this wonderful season, look for a Fall Festival to attend ! And if you can squeeze it into the day, drop by the store and get some canned pumpkin to make these delicious bars!
Ya'll visit me again!
May the Lord bless his people with peace and happiness and let them CELEBRATE!
*Originally posted October 11, 2011