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Halloween Pumpkin Spice Cookies

You can decorate cookies to look like jack-o-lanterns. With a pastry bag fitted with a #2 tip, pipe around the edge of a cookie and outline the face. Then fill in the areas with thinner royal icing.

  • yield: Makes about 6 1/2 dozen cookies

Ingredients

  • 4 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 3/4 pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • Royal Icing
  • Paste or gel food coloring

Cook's Note

To make royal icing thicker, add more confectioners' sugar; for thinner icing, add another egg white.

Directions

  1. Step 1

    Combine flour, baking soda, salt, baking powder, cinnamon, and ginger in a large bowl; sift, and set aside.

  2. Step 2

    In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine butter and sugar. Beat, starting on low speed and increasing to high, until mixture is fluffy, about 2 minutes; scrape the sides of the bowl down once with a rubber spatula. Add eggs, one at a time, and vanilla; beat on medium speed until just combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition.

  3. Step 3

    Turn off mixer. Add molasses, and mix on medium speed until just combined. Scrape sides of the bowl, and add dry ingredients. Mix, starting on low speed and increasing to medium high, until ingredients are just combined, about 30 seconds.

  4. Step 4

    Transfer dough to a clean work surface. Roll the dough into four 1 1/2-inch-diameter logs. Wrap in parchment or plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm, 1 to 2 hours.

  5. Step 5

    Heat oven to 350 degrees. Unwrap, and slice each log into 3/8-inch-thick rounds. Place rounds on parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake until cookies crack slightly on the surface, 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from oven, and let cool on the baking sheet for 2 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.

  6. Step 6

    When completely cool, decorate with royal icing mixed with desired food coloring.

Source
Martha Stewart Living, October 2000

Reviews (25)

  • 27 Oct, 2008

    You can find meringue powder at Michael's Craft Store in their Wilton baking section. In our store it is on a low, below knee level, shelf with the icings. Good luck!

  • 27 Oct, 2008

    You can find meringue powder at Michael's Craft Store in their Wilton baking section. In our store it is on a low, below knee level, shelf with the icings. Good luck!

  • 27 Oct, 2008

    You can find meringue powder at Michael's Craft Store in their Wilton baking section. In our store it is on a low, below knee level, shelf with the icings. Good luck!

  • 27 Oct, 2008

    You can find meringue powder at Michael's Craft Store in their Wilton baking section. In our store it is on a low, below knee level, shelf with the icings. Good luck!

  • 27 Oct, 2008

    You can find meringue powder at Michael's Craft Store in their Wilton baking section. In our store it is on a low, below knee level, shelf with the icings. Good luck!

  • 27 Oct, 2008

    You can find meringue powder at Michael's Craft Store in their Wilton baking section. In our store it is on a low, below knee level, shelf with the icings. Good luck!

  • 27 Oct, 2008

    You can find meringue powder at Michael's Craft Store in their Wilton baking section. In our store it is on a low, below knee level, shelf with the icings. Good luck!

  • 27 Oct, 2008

    Once again, royal icing made with raw egg whites is being promoted. This is not a good idea for children and elderly...for that matter would anyone in better want to risk getting sick? Why can't we find another recipe for icing? I know at one time MSL used merique (sp?) powder (not powdered egg whites) as a substitute and that is very difficult to find.

  • 26 Oct, 2008

    i just made a batch...i used a scant 1 tablespoon of soda and they taste very good...was concerned about the 2 T...plus, i have been using icing that i pick up at eat -n- park bakery (the icing they use for the smiley faces)..they sell it in containers if you ask them at the bakery in the restaurant. fresh.more delicious than the royal icing.. failproof. pipes perfectly. shiny. colors well. dries overnight and then you can stack it...i've been using it for all my holiday sugar cookies

  • 26 Oct, 2008

    I wondered about the "pumpkin" as well. I have a reciepe for "pumpkin" cookes and there is actually pumpkin in the reciepe. I might add they are great -- very moist!

  • 26 Oct, 2008

    The staff at MSL claims the amount of baking soda is correct, but it isn't. I've made this recipe for years and use only 2 teaspoons baking soda (I am a culinary professional). I don't know why their test kitchen does not retest this recipe and correct the amount.

  • 25 Oct, 2008

    I think the 2 T baking soda corresponds to the large amount of flour . . .

  • 25 Oct, 2008

    "There's not any pumpkin in the recipe?!?!?!" Are these serious statements by other users? Have any of you bought pumpkin pie spice? Yeah, that doesn't have any pumpkin in it either - just the spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice, ginger and mace.

  • 25 Oct, 2008

    Hasn't this recipe been corrected? I recall that someone wrote in pointing out the incorrect amount of baking soda and providing the correct amount.

  • 25 Oct, 2008

    I have to agree on some of the recipe ingredient amounts....I am
    areal nut for new cookie recipes and have made many many
    batches during my life and just instinctively know proper
    proportions. I have modified many recipes after following
    the original recipe and won't even do this one without
    modifying to begin with. Good Luck everybody.....

  • 25 Oct, 2008

    Sure would be nice if Martha and her elves could get the ingredients right.

  • 25 Oct, 2008

    pumpkin spice....not pumpkin cookies....it's the spices folks....not actual pumpkin..sounds like a good recipe....

  • 25 Oct, 2008

    There is 1 cup and then some more flour in this recipe than the than the spooky cookie recipe posted earlier, must be a mistake, and the spooky recipe has asked for 1 1/4 cups cocoa powder. That is a huge amount.

  • 25 Oct, 2008

    That does sound like a lot of baking soda, maybe it should be 2 teaspoons? That still is a lot of baking soda.... I think they are called "pumpkin" spice because they are shaped like pumpkins.

  • 25 Oct, 2008

    i think they're calling them pumpkin spice cookies because you're supposed to decorate them like carved pumpkins

  • 25 Oct, 2008

    Why are they called pumpkin spice cookies when there isnt any pumpkin in them? Am I missing something?

  • 25 Oct, 2008

    sounds like a lot of baking soda, you guys......is that the correct amount?

  • 25 Oct, 2008

    sounds like a lot of baking soda, you guys......is that the correct amount?

  • 29 Aug, 2008

    I drizzled some melted dark chocolate chips over them instead of icing them...very good!

  • 29 Nov, 2007

    This is a great cookie recipe even without the icing!