November 24, 2014

TASTE: Pumpkin & Cream Tartlets

Pumpkin & Cream Tartlets.
Happy Thanksgiving week! I'm sure your home is buzzing with holiday plans, presents stealthily hidden into musty closets waiting to be wrapped, kitchen working overtime pumping all kinds of toasty delicious aromas throughout the house. This is the beginning of the most wonderful time of year!

I wanted to share with you my favorite holiday dessert. I've made it every year for Thanksgiving at my parent's house, but I love it so much that I continue to make it for festive gatherings through New Years - who says pumpkin is only for Thanksgiving? That's just crazy talk. These tartlets are perfect for keeping that sweet tooth in check, because they are bite-sized bits of decadence. And seriously, seriously easy to create. They have a creamier, lighter flavor and texture than regular pumpkin pie, which provides that much-needed refreshing twist on the whole pumpkin-at-Thanksgiving thing. My personal secret is that I like to use a Ziploc bag to pipe everything beautifully into the tarts, because it makes them seem fancy. But if you need really delicious recipe and you're short on time, you can easily spoon them into the little filo dough cups and experience the same rich taste. This would be a great addition to any dessert buffet because they are just so pretty and dainty. And for real, TASTY.

Ingredients:
- 1 can organic pumpkin (I like this Trader Joes version)
- 3 packages frozen mini filo cups (You can find these in the frozen section next to the puff pastry, 3 packages makes 45 tartlets)
- 1 3.4-oz. package of instant cheesecake pudding (I use this Jello version - haven't been able to find a good replacement for this... yet)
- 1.5 cups heavy whipping cream (divided)
- 4 tbsp. Sugar in the Raw
- 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

// Isn't this mixer a beaut? It's my mom's, but I'm hoping Santa brings me one this Christmas... //
Method:
1. Place a metal mixing bowl and metal mixing whisk in the freezer for 15 minutes.

2. Pull frozen mini filo dough shells out of the freezer to thaw while preparing the filling.

3. Once 15 minutes has passed, place the 1.5 cups of heavy cream and 4 tbsp. sugar in the mixing bowl. Mix on medium-high until soft peaks form (this could take 3-5 minutes).

4. Divide the fresh whipped cream in half by scooping half of the cream into another bowl (set one portion aside for later.) Add to one bowl of fresh whipped cream: the can of pumpkin, package of instant cheesecake and pumpkin pie spice. Mix until combined and smooth.

5. Scoop mixture into a piping bag (or in my case, a large ziplock bag with a corner cut) and pipe into the individual filo cups. Top with the remaining fresh whipped cream (I also like to pipe it on top) and a sprinkle of pumpkin pie spice. Voila!

Happy Thanksgiving. 
Let me know if you decide to add these to your Thanksgiving dessert line up this year! Would love to know how it worked out! And I especially wish you a week chock-full of indulgent treats, delicious fireside chats and most of all, ridiculous amounts of family time. Happy Thanksgiving, folks!

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