Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies + KitchenAid Stand Mixer + $200 Williams-Sonoma Gift Card Giveaway

I have fond childhood memories of baking chocolate chip cookies with my my mom and sister. When my sister and I saw our mom’s circa 1972 split pea green KitchenAid Stand Mixer come out, we knew we were in for a treat.

The process of helping my mom in the kitchen and being her little helper was almost as good as the cookies we’d bake together.

My dad always knew if my sister and I had been in the kitchen that day helping out as evidenced by the eggshells in his cookies, which we’d proudly present to him and that he’d never turn down. They simply added a delicious crunch.

As a helper, I learned early on not to crank the mixer to high speed immediately after adding the flour. A good way to make my mom mad was to spray her kitchen with flour.

The best part of cookie making came when adding the chocolate chips to the dough.

I’d always sneak a handful of chocolate chips that were supposed to make it into the cookie dough, but made it into my mouth instead.

With this cookie recipe, I wanted to embrace the classic chocolate chip cookie I grew up eating, but also incorporate everyone’s favorite fall ingredient: pumpkin.

Plenty of recipes exist for soft, cake-like, pumpkin whoopie pie cookies, but I wanted these cookies to have the traditional chewiness of a true chocolate chip cookie, but infused with pumpkin.

After testing and experimenting with so many recipes and creating everything from cakey, soft, pumpkin mounds to pumpkin-laced hockey pucks, I finally found the texture and flavor I was in search of with this recipe.

The resulting cookies are soft, tender, light and have just a touch of cakiness, but they are also chewy with some heartiness. Soft pumpkin cookie meets chewy chocolate chip cookie. The edges crisp up and the centers remain pillowy soft.

They’re packed with the warming flavors of fall, including cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, cloves, and a dash of molasses.

The chocolate chips pair nicely with the pumpkin and the flavors complement each other so well. Then again, chocolate pairs so well with most anything for me.

A few cook’s notes:

The dough is soft and a bit tacky to work with, courtesy of the pumpkin puree. Pumpkin does a beautiful job of tenderizing baked goods, but it makes the dough a bit sticky. Counteract the stickiness by chilling the dough before scooping it into balls. In my trials, I chilled the dough ranging from 90 minutes to 4 days. The longer the dough is chilled, the easier it is to work with.

Prior to baking, rolling a ball of dough through a cinnamon-sugar mixture not only creates a extra bonus of texture and flavor in the finished cookies, but it does double-duty by taking the edge off some of the dough’s stickiness.

I found the best cookies result from using 1 1/2 tablespoons of well-chilled dough, scooped using a cookie scoop, dredged through cinnamon-sugar, and flattened slightly before baking.

The cookies spread very little while baking and I recommend flattening the dough mounds slightly before baking otherwise the base will cook through and become too well done before the top sets.

The cookies keep beautifully, and paradoxically, get softer over time. The brown sugar and molasses attract moisture from the air so there’s little worry of them drying out.

Then again, I don’t think you’ll have too many extra cookies just lingering around.

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Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Makes about 3 dozen medium-sized cookies

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened (1 stick)

3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3/4 cup canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)

1 tablespoon unsulphered molasses (I use Grandma’s Original)

3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, ground ginger, salt – all optional and to taste

3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 cups Nestle Tollhouse Semi-Sweet Morsels

Cinnamon-Sugar Mixture, for rolling

1/3 cup granulated sugar

3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine butter, brown sugar, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, and beat on medium-high to high speed for 3 to 4 minutes to cream ingredients; stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the egg, vanilla, and beat on high speed for 3 to 4 minutes until mixture is light and fluffy. Add the pumpkin, unsulphered molasses (blackstrap molasses may be substituted but it’s bolder and more intense), 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, cloves, optional spices, salt, and mix until incorporated, about 1 minute. (All spices should be added to taste and use more or less, depending on how robustly-flavored you prefer your cookies. As written, the spices are nicely balanced and the cookies are of average intensity. Adding ginger, additional cinnamon or cloves, will give them a stronger punch and kick, rendering them more like a pumpkin-ginger-spice cookie)

Add the flour, baking soda, and mix until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips by hand. Dough will be thick and dense yet soft, and must be refrigerated and chilled before it’s suitable for scooping out and baking off. Cover mixing bowl with plastic wrap or transfer dough into an airtight container and refrigerate dough for at least 90 minutes, overnight, or up to four days.

Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare baking sheets by lining them with Silpat liners, parchment paper, or spray them with cooking spray; set aside. Make the Cinnamon-Sugar Mixture by combining 1/3 cup granulated sugar and 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon in a small bowl and stir to combine; set aside.

Form 1 1/2 tablespoon-sized balls of dough using a cookie scoop and dredge each ball through the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place balls on baking sheets; cookies spread very little and can be spaced about 2 inches apart on baking sheets. Flatten balls slightly before baking to ensure cookies cook through evenly. Bake for 12-13 minutes or until the edges near the bases of the cookies are golden and set, and tops have just set; cookies will continue to firm up as they cool. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheets for at least 10 minutes before moving them. Cookies will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Cookies can be kept vegan by using vegan margarine such as Earth Balance and replacing the egg with a flax egg. Cookies can be made gluten-free by using a gluten-free flour blend such as Bob’s Red Mill.

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And now, onto the Giveaway portion of this post. You can enter to win:

a $200 gift card from Williams-Sonoma

and a KitchenAid Stand Mixer

Yes, one lucky person will win both.

The mixer is from the KitchenAid Custom Metallic® Series | Tilt-Head Stand Mixer | Flour Power™ Rating – 9 Cup

It’s a 5-Quart size with a 10-speed Solid State Control

It comes with a flat beater, wire whip, and dough hook

It retails for $649.95

I’m sure I don’t need to sell you on the benefits, workmanship, and high quality nature of a KitchenAid Stand Mixer or twist your arm to pick out $200 worth of items from Williams-Sonoma.

Although Tweets, Facebook mentions, or Pinterest Pins about this post are appreciated, they are not required for entry.

Simply answer the following question by leaving a comment below to enter the giveaway:

Please share a favorite baking memory. (Please be detailed and specific)

Contest ends Monday, October 8, 2012 and winner will be chosen randomly. Open to continental U.S. residents only. Complete contest rules can be found at the bottom of this page.

This post is sponsored by Nestlé® Toll House® Morsels, the perfect special ingredient for all of your family’s favorite treats!

 



   

814 Responses to “Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies + KitchenAid Stand Mixer + $200 Williams-Sonoma Gift Card Giveaway”

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    JoeyfromSC — September 24, 2012 at 12:21 am

    Those look SO good lol..I love ANYTHING with pumpkin in it! yumo! Thanks for sharing the recipe!

    Being from the South, my family always had big holiday get-togethers! I have many baking memories growing up..I think it’s what fueled my passion for baking….I especially love making fudge with my Aunt every Christmas(technically not baking I know lol). I also have vivid memories of baking cookies and other treats with my Mom growing up! (R.I.P.)

    Actually, I still have THE very 1st ever recipe I got/made from her friend June…It was when I was 10. It is called “apple crunch” and it’s basically an apple cobbler..I still have it in my own handwriting lol…Thanks for helping me go down memory lane!

    I have never been able to afford a nice Kitchen-Aid stand mixer, but it’s always been my dream to own one! Thanks SO much for the chance to win!!

    ajoebloe(at)gmail(dot)com

    Reply

    • JoeyfromSC replied: — September 24th, 2012 at 12:21 am

      wow, I’m lucky #1 haha..hope my # comes up:) I also love your blog btw!! Glad I found you!

      Reply

    • katie replied: — September 24th, 2012 at 4:49 am

      one memory i will never forget is when I burned a whole batch of granola to a dark, dark, crisp. I cried I was so upset and my dad thought i was crazy. I had to throw it all out and did not make another batch right after because i was so mad. it is not a happy moment but i laugh looking back on it!

      Reply

    • Rachel Larman replied: — September 24th, 2012 at 11:26 am

      The first time I baked chocolate chip cookies without a recipe! I felt so accomplished, like I actually knew what I was doing!

      Reply

    • Becky replied: — October 1st, 2012 at 12:37 am

      I remember baking with my grandmother. She made the best cobblers. We would go out to the back yard and pick blackberries. Then we come in and wash them and make the dough. Roll it out and put it n a baking dish, She would then add sugar and butter and make a lattice top. It was always best warm right out of the oven topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. MMMMM!

      Reply

    • Jerry replied: — October 5th, 2012 at 12:57 pm

      My two younger sisters were making snickerdoodle cookies once. I’m not sure ow which one was measuring the lard for the recipe, but instead of 2 T of lard, she put in 2 C of lard! They were a little greasy to say the least! Now when someone in our family mentions ‘Larddoodles’, we all get a good laugh!

      Reply

    • mfromsj replied: — October 5th, 2012 at 5:30 pm

      wow

      Reply

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    Victoria Berman — September 24, 2012 at 12:37 am

    My mother was a wonderful, old-fashion cook. She had dinner ready every night at six o’clock sharp. I thought that everyone’s mom cooked three meals a day for their family. Little did I know, what a labor of love it was for her. However, mom did not “bake”. She told us that she tried to bake for one of our birthday’s when we were little and it was a traumatic disaster. It must have been, for never a baked item emerged from her over again. However, every year on our birthday, she picked up beautiful cupcakes from the top bakery in town, and brought them into our classroom, for all to share. It was very nice. Oh and so we were not totally deprived from the home baked experience, we got the slick and bake cookie dough from the grocery store. Awesome. I was allowed to eat the raw dough from each of the ends. Of course, I sliced the end super big. I still love the taste of that pre-made dough. Yum.

    Reply

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    Laura Duffey — September 24, 2012 at 1:05 am

    One of my favorite memories of baking is also one of my earliest and that would be using my Easy Bake Oven….my chance to ‘bake’ just like mommy. From every moment of mixing together the ingredients to spying on it while it to while (impatiently) waiting for it to cool so it could be decorated. That was truly my first step towards the baking world.

    Reply

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    Karen — September 24, 2012 at 1:12 am

    One of my favorite baking memories is in the kitchen with my mom…helping her bake sugar cookies and then frosting them with my sister. My mom would let us put all the sprinkles we wanted on those cookies, which I imagine was a lot! She never discouraged us though and it was her encouragement that has made me enjoy baking as much as I do today.

    Thanks for the opportunity to win these items…both are items that would be greatly appreciated.

    Reply

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    Michelle @ Eat Move Balance — September 24, 2012 at 2:14 am

    My favorite baking memory is with my Mom and Grandma as a child. Every Christmas, we would all be in the kitchen decorating my Mom’s famous sand tart cookies with festive sprinkles. We would try and sneak eating some of the dough–it was so good! Then, we would place some of these cookies (and milk of course) by the fireplace for Santa. It was such a magical time spent with family, baking.

    Reply

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    Meryl — September 24, 2012 at 2:57 am

    My favorite baking memory is a giant fail. I woke up at five to make a carrot cake for my Dad’s birthday. Everything was going smoothly until I pull the cake out of the oven and it’s a custard like mess. I looked over the recipe to see where I went wrong and found nothing. So I started over…same result. One more fail later and lots of wasted ingredients I realize my mom doesn’t label her dry mixes and the “flour” I had been using was powdered sugar. Oops…

    Reply

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    Christen F — September 24, 2012 at 3:23 am

    My most meaningful baking memory was the first time I got to bake with my grandmother. Every christmas my family and I go down south for a family reunion. My grandmother makes her special red velvet cake (my absolute favorite dessert of all time!) and everyone looks forward to it. When I was five she let me into the kitchen and actually help her make the cake rather then just watch (which i loved doing anyway). Just being in the kitchen alone with my grandmother while she bakes is one of my all time favorite things to do because we are both so passionate about it and it is a wonerful bonding opportunity. That first red velvet cake that I made with her happened to be the best cake in my opinion. I look forward to every christmas for her red velvet cake and hope that she asks me to help make the cake with her :)

    Reply

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    Beth — September 24, 2012 at 3:25 am

    Every Thanksgiving and Christmas, my mom and I get up early to cook a ridiculously large meal for family. Inevitably, there are at least three pies, homemade rolls, one or more cakes…did I mention there are only four of us? We enjoy each other’s company, take our time, drink mimosas, and each put a lot of love into each dish.

    Reply

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    Ala — September 24, 2012 at 3:26 am

    I had no idea that leaving pumpkin cookie dough in the fridge for up to 4 days was even kosher–thanks for the helpful handling tip! We almost *never* turned on the oven in our house when I was young, so it was really fun reading about your baking experiences. Almost makes me impatient to start my own household where the oven will be on 24/7, and lots of eggshells will make their way into our batter! (And not enough chocolate chips, probably.) Thank you for sharing this wonderful recipe/story!

    Reply

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    Deborah Maxey — September 24, 2012 at 3:33 am

    Years ago when we first went vegan, I discovered the hard way there was a learning curve. The week our vegan lives began I was preparing for a family camping trip. I tried to make the things we usually enjoyed and pack them to go. After all, why should giving up meat and animal products change our life radically? So there was marinara sauce, vegan chili and …..oatmeal cookies. However, I had not yet tried to master vegan baking. So I was faithful to a recipe, thinking someone else had mastered it before me. I spooned the little darlings out of the bowl and onto the sheet. They weren’t quite mounded up like un-vegan cookies would be, but oh well, this was a new world. In the oven they went and when the timer went off, proud me, the woman who was determined our family wouldn’t suffer if they went along with my “veganness”, opened the door to find a solid sheet of …something. There wasn’t even a clue of where one “cookie” might begin and another end. With no time to spare now, when they cooled, I cut the pan like you would a pan of brownies and loaded the squares into a container. The next day, camped out, surrounded by nature, far from hope of a rescue supermarket, my family enjoyed the chili and said they couldn’t wait to see desert, that this vegan lifestyle thing wasn’t going to be so bad. I pulled out the “cookies” only to find that they had melded into some sort of soft oatmeal block. My husband, ever forgiving and flexible, said “Cool, spoon cookies”. Any time I made cookies after that, the question always was “Do we need a spoon?”

    Reply

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    Kelsey M — September 24, 2012 at 3:51 am

    Growing up my mother and two sisters would spend the week leading up to Christmas making two types of cookies! My favorite memories were rolling the cookies in sugar and gently flattening on the tray. My mother was always so patient and wonderful teacher! I am looking forward to having children to cook with in the kitchen and going to Grans to cook with as well!

    Reply

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    ariana — September 24, 2012 at 3:54 am

    I would love to win! one of my favorite baking memories is growing up with my mom when I was maybe 4. We would always offer to ‘help’ and then proceed to spill the flour, crush the eggshells into the mixer, and probably just make a mess all in the process of trying to learn how to make the devine cookies that she did. We were only allowed to lick the beaters if we helped. But it was fantastically fun, my mom was always patient and now I can make cookies myself…and always let my mom lick the beater.

    Reply

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    Lara — September 24, 2012 at 3:57 am

    My favorite baking memory is definately watching my son Alex bake pies with my grandmother, and I’m pretty sure she would say that is one of hers as well!

    Reply

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    Paula — September 24, 2012 at 4:14 am

    When I was about 10, I thought I’d make cookies–I just dumped ALL the ingredients in the bowl and started the mixer up. Mom rescued the batter somehow and that was my first lesson in creaming butter and sugar together. Great looking cookies! I didn’t ever think pumpkin and chocolate would go together until I tried it a few years ago and I’m glad I did!

    Reply

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    Bethany — September 24, 2012 at 4:27 am

    My favorite cooking memory is making stuffing with my mom (we still do this, except now it’s more of me making stuffing and her making sure I’m not forgetting anything). There’s no recipe, just a list of ingredients so we have to add spices and things by smell, sight and taste. Part of the reason this is my favorite memory is because it happens every year – from the time I could sit up on my own I was sitting on the counter pulling bread apart into the stuffing (we use bread pieces instead of bread crumbs). As I got older I became more and more interested in making the stuffing, and in the past few years my mom has passed on the making of the stuffing to me – I still make it at her house, in her kitchen, with her helping…that’s half the fun of it!

    Reply

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    Katie — September 24, 2012 at 4:33 am

    My mom does not generally enjoy cooking, so I don’t have a ton of memories cooking or baking with her. But I do remember when she would make homemade chocolate chip cookies. I would volunteer to help with as many steps as possible, all the while hoping and praying that she would let me lick the beaters before she put the cookies in the oven to bake. She would also usually let me eat one cookie fresh and hot from the oven before letting the rest cool and putting them away. Those days were the best. :)

    Reply

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    Aimee @ ShugarySweets — September 24, 2012 at 4:42 am

    What a gorgeous cookie! And Mixer. And of course shopping spree. This is like the best post ever :) My favorite baking memory is helping my mom make cookies on the weekends. We would look through cookbooks and pick one recipe that looked delicious and new!

    Reply

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    Megan — September 24, 2012 at 4:45 am

    My favorite baking memories are from Christmas time when I was a kid. My mom would bake every so often throughout the year, but at Christmas we pulled out all the “classic” recipes-Peanut Butter Blossoms, Russian teacakes, Pecan Tassies, PB Cup cookies, cut out sugar cookies, etc. I loved getting to help in any way she would let me, from unwrapping the candies to measuring/mixing when I got older. Now that I’m an adult, I find myself wanting to start the Christmas cookie baking earlier each year, and although I have added new cookies to the rotation (so many awesome recipes out there now with blogs!) I always make some of the “classics”

    Reply

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    Sue — September 24, 2012 at 4:47 am

    My mom delighted in making her yearly fruit cake. Fruit cake, which so many people love to dislike. My mom’s fruitcake turned everyone around – it is terrific. So, she made a huge batch every holiday season – and I helped to varying degrees. It was (and is) a blast to make. The recipe makes a huge quantity, thus one starts by mixing the dry fruits and nuts in a turkey roasting pan. A big one. We used to make as much of the dried fruit ourselves from our fruit trees, so many of the fruits were not candied with sugar, just by the sun. After we mixed the wet ingredients together in a separate bowl you combine it all in the roasting pan – it barely fits. By hand. What a wonderful, visceral experience – kneading and squeezing and mixing all those fabulous ingredients together. Then the messy experience of trying to use your hands to stuff the dough into all those pans – someone helping you scrap it off of you. The ovens would be stuffed full of all sizes of pans in hot water – scary! Of course, the finished product is delicious and always coveted by the lucky people on our list. I still have to limit my requests every year.
    It is one of the fondest memories I have of my mom, I made it with her until she was well into her eighties, my kids, husband and brothers helping at various times. My husband, brother and kids still help me every year – everyone wants to be the mixer. I hope it never ends. Thanks for bringing up that memory. You made my day.

    Reply

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    Rachel @ Baked by Rachel — September 24, 2012 at 4:47 am

    I love your story of possible crunchy cookies from egg shells. Hilarious but such a sweet memory. I enjoyed making cookies with my mom and as you, of course stole handfuls of chocolate chips when no one was looking. I’d wait eagerly for the mixing to be done so I could lick the beaters, spoons and bowl clean. But in our house, it sometimes took days to empty out the bowl of dough… I helped it along by sneaking spoonfuls of dough as a walk by snack. ;) BTW pumpkin and chocolate just go together! :)

    Reply

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    Kate — September 24, 2012 at 4:51 am

    My favorite baking memory is with my grandma (my mom’s mom). We would make Nestle Toll House chocolate chip cookies and I’d be so excited to try the dough, my favorite part. I would stand on a chair and help her as she mixed the dough by hand in a bowl inside the sink so she wouldn’t make a mess all over the counter. Or maybe it was so I wouldn’t make a mess all over the counter by “helping”. Ha! She’d bake the cookies and then freeze some of them away for the next time my brother and I visited. You can be sure my bro and I made a beeline for the freezer the next time we stopped by.

    Reply

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    Anele @ Success Along the Weigh — September 24, 2012 at 4:51 am

    That’s cute you think I could wait 4 days for the dough to chill without slamming my face into it. ;-)

    My favorite baking memory is when I used to bake Christmas cookies with my Grandma as a kid. This year, with her Alzheimer’s advancing, I have to teach her how to bake them again.

    Reply

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    Katie — September 24, 2012 at 4:52 am

    One memory I will never forget is making gingerbread houses with my grandmother. She had my brother and I over every winter to bake cookies and make gingerbread houses. We would always make sugar cookies and decorate them. She loved having us over to be in the kitchen with her. I think I got my love for the kitchen from her.

    Reply

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    Nicole — September 24, 2012 at 4:52 am

    Every holiday season my family bakes cut-out sugar cookies. We’ve been doing this in our immediate family for 30+ years and my dad takes the lead. He’s been doing it for 60+ years, having started with his mom when he was a toddler!
    My dad and I do most of the rolling, cutting, frosting together – we get started really early (5am early!) and then the rest of the family joins later in the day. We usually bake all day and then give the cookies to friends and family across the country.

    Reply

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    Meghan — September 24, 2012 at 4:55 am

    Funny how a lot of these memories are “failures”! I guess that’s how we learn :)

    I remember baking with my mother when I was young – she would let me do pretty much anything to help EXCEPT crack the eggs. So of course, that’s the only part I wanted to do…I decided one time to crack them on my own (to prove her wrong for not trusting me, of course!) but the yolk and shells ended up all over the counter. Embarrassed, I covered them with a towel and they ended up drying, and stripping off the enamel of our countertops. Mom was NOT happy and I still think of that when I crack eggs today!

    Reply

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    theresa — September 24, 2012 at 5:03 am

    all of my baking memories involve my beautiful mother….so they’re all great memories!! one of my most favorite things to do is bake a loaf of pumpkin bread with my mom in the fall :)

    Reply

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    Karly — September 24, 2012 at 5:04 am

    What an AMAZING giveaway, lady! Go you! :)

    Reply

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    sara l — September 24, 2012 at 5:06 am

    My favorite memory is learning how to make a proper pie crust and apple pie as taught to me by my maternal grandmother. From the sprinkling of the water and flour, to the angle of the rolling pin, to the dotting of the butter nestled in the cinnamon apples, it’s all as if it happened yesterday.

    Reply

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    Heather (Where's the Beach) — September 24, 2012 at 5:06 am

    Those cookies sound incredible. I think my sis and I did pretty well about keeping eggshells out….I think ;-)

    My sis and I baked a lot as kids so it’s hard to come up with just one favorite moment. Perhaps when we started baking cookies at Christmas for gifts. We had such a blast, made such a mess, and ate way too many treats. But absolutely worth it!

    Reply

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    Katie — September 24, 2012 at 5:10 am

    AMAZING GIVEAWAY!

    A baking memory…..

    Every year around christmas time, my mom,sisters, and I would make our FAVORITE cookie! The peanut butter thumbprint cookies! I loved pb and of course I loved the chocolate hershey kiss that went in the middle! My sisters and I would love helping my mom and we all would pray for a broken hershey kiss while unwrapping them or we would sneak one in to eat while doing it.

    I will always remember the fun times making those cookies together BUT the funniest thing was what happened every year! My mom would buy the bags of hershey kisses for the cookies and when she would go to get the bags, she would notice one gone or one opened and almost empty. She would seriously flip her lid, lol!

    Guess who was the hershey kiss monster? My dad! She would yell at him and tell him these were not to be eaten, but every year he still did it. Finally one year my mom got smart and hid them! Haha!

    Oh memories!

    Reply

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    Rachel Cooks — September 24, 2012 at 5:12 am

    WOW! What a giveaway. It’s so hard to pick a favorite baking memory–but I think it would be decorating sugar cookies with my mom and my sister for Christmas. I have a picture where I am covered in sugar and sprinkles. Too much fun :)

    Reply

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    Gail — September 24, 2012 at 5:13 am

    One of my favorite baking memories is of making trays and trays of cut out sugar cookies for Christmas. Once the baking was done, the family would gathered around to help decorate. There were laughs and some crazy looking trees. My husband, my parents, my brother, sister in law and my little niece, all painting cookies. Good times, only a memory now. My brother is gone, and we live in a new state now. It warmed my heart recently that my little niece, now a college freshman, remembers those times with fondness as well.

    Reply

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    Katie — September 24, 2012 at 5:16 am

    My memories include a kitchen aid with my mom too. I would help her make and eat the dough. Now I carry this on with my own girls.

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    Karen — September 24, 2012 at 5:20 am

    My mom always made monster cookies every December. I remember my sister and I pulling chairs up to the counter to help pour in the ingredients and stir the dough!

    Reply

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    Elaine — September 24, 2012 at 5:27 am

    My parents were always in the kitchen, so I grew up learning how to cook and bake. I was in the kitchen at such a young age that I called knives “sharps” because I couldn’t properly say the word knives. And my Mom quickly taught me that “sharps” were a no-no. :)

    To choose a favorite memory is impossible, but one of my favorite memories is baking cakes or cookies for someone’s birthday. My Mom always insisted on making something extra special, whether that was finding a new recipe that the person would love, adding a ton of sprinkles, making the person’s favorite frosting, or getting lots of candles to completely cover the birthday cake. The greatest feeling was bringing the final product out and seeing the look on the birthday girl/boy’s face. It is memories like these that make me love to entertain, love to bake for people, and love to see the smiles that a fresh batch of cookies or their favorite cupcakes can bring.

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    Margaret — September 24, 2012 at 5:33 am

    Every year since 3rd grade, when the air would start getting cooler (for Southern California), my best freind and I would break out the mixing bowls and cookie sheets. The working together, laughing and taste testing bring back fond memories. We now live halfway across the country from each other but whenever we’re together in the fall, we still bake together.

    Reply

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    Diana — September 24, 2012 at 5:33 am

    Last year my daughter participated in a holiday cookie baking and decorating party for her 3year old preschool class. Parents and classmates assembled eagerly to tie on their aprons and headed to one of several stations where we rotated through measuring, mixing, rolling, baking, decorating and of course EATING! Kids even enjoyed cleaning up together! I was amazed at the passion and skill that all the kids had at such a young age. Yes they were getting a math lesson, an art lesson, a teamwork and social skills lesson but it was FUN too. I was inspired by that day and set out to form a regular cooking event that will take place monthly with each of our 13 classrooms ages 2-6 yrs old. They will learn to develop many skills taught through a hands on seasonal food experience that also ties into our monthly themed citizenship program Seeds To Grow On (STGO) which in addition to the cooking component also includes garden classroom, art projects and relevant literature through the weekly school library visit. Anything that we can get donated to our school
    program would be one more step in the right direction! We begin our classes in October:)

    Reply

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    Kristine — September 24, 2012 at 5:33 am

    My favorite baking memory (or memories, I should say) are the handful of times my Omi, aka German grandma, traveled to the USA and she and I baked Christmas cookies together. Hands down, there is nothing like a German Christmas cookie made by my little German Omi. Of course, this year I sent her some delicious pina` colada cookies… sound familiar? She LOVED them!

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    Justeen @ Blissful Baking — September 24, 2012 at 5:35 am

    My favorite baking memory is making a 3-tiered wedding cake with the help of 3 of my girlfriends for another friend’s wedding. It was the summer before my senior year in college, and we lived in a tiny apartment with no AC. None of us had any experience making wedding cakes, but we had a blast learning to work with fondant, taste testing multiple cakes recipes, fillings, and frostings. Would love to make a wedding cake again someday!

    Also, I LOVE a good chewy pumpkin cookie. Last fall, I tried Jessica’s recipe from How Sweet It Is, but I’m definitely going to be trying up your version too!

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    Karen B — September 24, 2012 at 5:36 am

    Making our Happy Birthday Jesus cakes on Christmas Eve. It was a special way to remember what the holiday was about, open all the family presents and have the kids help in the kitchen. We always went all out on the cake. Nothing was too much. Again, it was a family effort.

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    katie @ KatieDid — September 24, 2012 at 5:40 am

    About 2 years ago when I was just getting into baking and cooking I was trying to make smore brownies for a family party. On the final step of browning the marshmallows under the broiler I shut the oven door and 30 seconds later the whole pan was engulfed in flames! I scraped them all off and tried again leaving the door open and they came out perfect haha.

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    Leanne @ Healthful Pursuit — September 24, 2012 at 5:41 am

    Ha my sister was the same in the kitchen, still is today. Eggshells in cookies were a regular occurrence when I *had* to include her in my baking pursuits.

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    Emily Cheng — September 24, 2012 at 5:48 am

    I love the transition from summer to fall weather because it means I no longer have to worry about turning the house into a sauna every time I use the oven. My favorite baking memory would have to be making pumpkin pie from real pumpkin (as opposed to from a can) for the first time a couple of years ago. My roommate was attempting a turducken, and I made the desserts. There was enough leftover filling and pie dough to make a mini pie that I got to try before the guests arrived. It was so good! Made it hard to ever go back to canned pumpkin.

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    Virginia — September 24, 2012 at 5:49 am

    My earliest and favorite baking memory is baking Christmas cookies with my mom, and we still get together and bake cookies every Christmas.

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    vanillasugarblog — September 24, 2012 at 5:51 am

    oh my gosh girl
    would I love to win this–today is my birthday too.
    but seriously would you believe I still do not have a mixer in my kitchen?
    yep. haven’t had the money–done all the baking by hand. crazy I know.
    those cookies look INSANE. I never would have thought to add in molasses (good call).
    favorite memory? my great gran made the best pb cookies with me; always with me. there was something about her PB cookies. I never got to ask her about the recipe before she passed. but they had a slight texture (crunch) to them.

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    Jena — September 24, 2012 at 5:51 am

    My favorite backing memory is when my husband (then boyfriend) and I baked an apple pie after we went apple picking. It has been our tradition for 6 years so far!

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    Scott M. — September 24, 2012 at 5:56 am

    My favorite baking moment was when I was maybe 9 or 10. That’s really the first time I can remember helping mom make cookies and candy for Christmas. It seems like it was late at night, which made it seem more special that we were able to stay up past bed time. There was no TV on and the only lights on were in the kitchen. Mom was playing Christmas music on an old Stereo/Record player they had and my sister and I sang along as we made chocolate chip cookies, chocolate covered pretzels, fudge, and peanut brittle. How my mom ever managed to do all that with 4 kids AND keep her sanity, I’ll never know.

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    Jess — September 24, 2012 at 5:58 am

    With memories like that no wonder you love baking! Sweet story! I can’t enter I’m in Australia- I just wanted to say that was a nice post.

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    Sara j — September 24, 2012 at 6:00 am

    My favorite baking memory is Christmas cookie baking. My mom and I would bake literally all day. Every year, we would choose some new recipes. It was a great time to hang out in pj’s, drink hot chocolate and sneak cookie dough. I loved frosting the cut outs and took a lot of time to do detail , sprinkling and color. We made a wide variety from Italian inspired to classic. I also loved being able to share the finished product with family.

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    Kristen — September 24, 2012 at 6:04 am

    One of my favorite baking memories is while making chocolate chip cookies I realized how much sugar was in them!
    I asked my mom “are we really going to add this much sugar?”
    She answered “if we want them to taste good!”

    Once they were done I quickly forgot how unhealthy they must be.

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