Terry John Zila's Pumpkin Whoopee Pies and more

4:52 PM, Nov 18, 2013   |    comments
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GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. - Think pumpkin is just for pies? Think again!

Chef Terry John Zila brings pumpkin to many of his favorite desserts, plus another favorite, his New York Cheesecake. 


Pumpkin Whoopee Pies

For the Cream-Cheese Filling
3 cups confectioners' sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the Pumpkin Whoopie Cookies
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon ground cloves
2 cups firmly packed dark-brown sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
3 cups pumpkin puree, chilled
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


1. Make the cookies: Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat; set aside.

2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves; set aside. In another large bowl, whisk together brown sugar and oil until well combined. Add pumpkin puree and whisk until combined. Add eggs and vanilla and whisk until well combined. Sprinkle flour mixture over pumpkin mixture and whisk until fully incorporated.

3. Using a small ice cream scoop with a release mechanism, drop heaping tablespoons of dough onto prepared baking sheets, about 1 inch apart. Transfer to oven and bake until cookies are just starting to crack on top and a toothpick inserted into the center of each cookie comes out clean, about 15 minutes. Let cool completely on pan.

4. Make the filling: Sift confectioner' sugar into a medium bowl; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter until smooth. Add cream cheese and beat until well combined. Add confectioners' sugar and vanilla, beat just until smooth.

5. Assemble the whoopee pies: Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. Transfer filling to a disposable pastry bag and snip the end. When cookies have cooled completely, pipe a large dollop of filling on the flat side of half of the cookies.

6. Sandwich with remaining cookies, pressing down slightly so that the filling spreads to the edge of the cookies. Transfer to prepared baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate cookies at least 30 minutes before serving and up to 3 days.

Chocolate Devils Food Layer Cake


2 cups sugar
1 ½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup cocoa powder
1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
1 ½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk
½ cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoon pure vanilla
1 cup pumpkin puree

1 cup boiling water

1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Spray 2(two) 8-inch cake pans with non-stick cooking spray, such as
Pam, line pans with parchment circles pans spray again. Set aside
2. Put a kettle or pan of water on to boil.
3. In the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk together dry
4. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the buttermilk and the vegetable oil. Add the eggs, vanilla and pumpkin puree and whisk to blend.
5. Add blended milk mixture to the dry ingredients and blend until combined, about 3 minutes, scraping bowl twice.
6. Slowly blend in the 1 cup boiling water. Remove bowl from mixer and scrape bowl with a rubber spatula to ensure all ingredients are completely combined and the batter is uniform.
7. Pour batter into prepared pans, making sure to divide the batter evenly. Bake cakes for approximately 35 minutes , or until a wooden toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake
comes out clean.
8. Cool cakes on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then invert cakes onto parchment-lined baking sheets. Gently peel off parchment paper and allow to cool completely before assembling the

New York Cheesecake
Note: You will need a 10-inch springform pan for this recipe.


¾ cup unsalted butter at room temperature
1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup granulated sugar
1 egg yolk
Zest of 1 lemon

5- 8ounce packages cream cheese
1 ¾ cups granulated sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 egg yolks
5 eggs (graded large)
¼ cup heavy whipping cream
Zest of 1 lemon
¼ teaspoon salt

Make the crust

1. In the bowl of a standing electric mixer, beat together all crust ingredients until dough is
uniform. Remove dough from mixing bowl and wrap in plastic wrap and Chill one hour.

Preheat oven to 400°F
2. Press ? of the dough in the bottom of a 10-inch springform pan and bake for 8 minutes. Set aside and make filling.
Turn oven to 475ºF.
3. In the bowl of a standing mixer, beat cream cheese until smooth.
4. Slowly beat in 1 ¾ cups sugar until fully incorporated and smooth.
5. With the mixer running at low speed, beat in remaining ingredients. At high speed, beat cheese cake filling for 5 minutes.
6. Press remaining dough up the sides of the springform pan within one inch of the top rim.
7. Pour cheesecake filling mixture into pan and bake for 12 minutes.
8. Lower oven heat to 300ºF and bake for an additional 30-35 minutes.
9. Turn oven off and allow to stand in oven for additional 30 minutes. (This will help the top of the cheesecake not to crack during the cooling process.)
10. Cool baked cake in the pan on a cooling rack. Refrigerate OVERNIGHT before serving.

Top chilled cake with lemon curd, sour cream, or whipped cream if desired.

(Copyright 2013 by KARE. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. )

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