‘Tis the season for everything homemade to be infused with the flavors of pumpkin. Sometime around mid-September girls everywhere start hash-tagging #PSL and #StarbucksHolidayCups (or #RedCups, or #HolidayCups…whatever- it’s dumb, is what I'm saying). In case you live under a rock, PSL stands for pumpkin spiced latte, Starbucks’ seasonal treat that is kind of not really seasonal at all. And these holiday cups…they’re red, have a few reindeer and/or snowflakes on them, and are used only in the last few months of the year. Read: Starbucks loves the holidays and tries to make them special. The wildfire caused by #PSL-season is evident from this pithy little internet postcard (to be fair - I'd say the PSL love is obnoxious cross-culturally, and brings out girls everywhere, not just the caucasian yoga pants-wearing ones in sorority tank tops - despite the internet's collection of PSL memes):
My favorite drink ever in the history of the world, caramel apple cider, used to be “seasonal” at Starbucks, yet for some reason, ever since 2011 it has been on the menu year round. And now I think it comes out of a cardboard box, like juice! Unacceptable! One would think this accessibility would be cause for rejoicing, but nay. The luster has been lost, and caramel apple cider no longer signals “Christmas is near!” now all it means is “it’s Tuesday afternoon and too late for coffee.”
All of this being said, I love pumpkin and spices…and caramel…and pumpkin-spiced-caramely things…just as much as the next yoga-pants wearing female. So I introduce to you the caramel stuffed pumpkin (spiced) cookie…you can thank me later. Your yoga pants, will not.
Recipes for you!
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 + 1/2 cups granulated sugar, divided
1/3 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 + 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons + 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, divided
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 (14 ounce) bag Kraft Caramels or chewy Werther’s (for a chewier middle) (unwrap about 30 of them)