The first time I heard the phrase “Making Whoopie,” I was watching The Newlywed Game on TV. The host, Bob Eubanks, had a question for the contestants: Where’s the strangest place you’ve ever made whoopie? From the blushes and laughter, I just knew whoopie (whatever that was) had to be GOOD. Next thing I know, I’m all grown up. I’ve moved far away from the heartland of the Amish – home of the original Whoopie Pie – to a whole new world of whoopie. Mainers LOVE these little cakes!! They hold an annual Whoopie Pie festival, there are even stores devoted to the dessert. So when long-time reader Tracie sent me a recipe for Pumpkin Whoopie Pies, I tested them on my discerning Mainer neighbors. The verdict? “AMAZING!” “Spicy, moist and irresistible.” Here’s to making (low sodium) whoopie!
A few notes. 1) YES, you really do use that much spice, so don’t skimp. 2) Save yourself hassle or heartache and use parchment (or Silpat). 3) Make sure you’ve eaten before making these, otherwise you’ll find yourself reaching for another, and another, and …
Yields 12 whoopie pies.
SODIUM CONTENT: 52 mg per pie
3 c. flour
2 t. Featherweight sodium free baking powder
1 t. Ener-G sodium free baking soda
2 T. ground cinnamon
1 T. ground ginger
1 T. ground cloves
2 c. firmly packed brown sugar
1 c. vegetable oil
3 c. pumpkin puree, chilled
2 large eggs
1 t. pure vanilla extract
3 c. powdered sugar
4 T. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened
2 oz. cream cheese, softened
4 T. low fat milk
1 t. pure vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or nonstick baking mat; set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves; set aside.
In another large bowl, mix together the brown sugar and oil. Add the pumpkin puree and stir until combined. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix until well combined. Gradually add the flour mixture and stir until fully incorporated. Using a small ice cream scoop with a release mechanism, drop heaping tablespoons of dough onto the prepared baking sheets, about 1 inch apart. Transfer to oven and bake on middle rack for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool completely on pan.
To make the filling, sift the powdered sugar into a mixing bowl. Add the butter and cream cheese and beat until smooth. Add the milk and vanilla and beat until fluffy.
When cookies have cooled completely, pipe or spread a large dollop of filling on the flat side of one of the cookies. Sandwich with another cookie, pressing down slightly so that the filling spreads to the edges. Transfer to a plate or cover with plastic wrap. Serve immediately or refrigerate cookies for up to 3 days.