Owner of Studmuffin Desserts, Seth Raphaeli is making some delicious cookies with dried apricots and pumpkin.

Ingredients for the Filling

  • ½ pound dried apricots
  • 3/4 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 tbs. butter at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 tsps pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Ingredients for the Dough

  • 1 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 2 tsps. brandy (preferably Courvoisier)
  • 1 ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 egg
  • ½ tsp ground cloves
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup fine-grade semolina
  • Dash of salt
  • Cinnamon Powdered sugar for sprinkling

Ingredients for Caramel Sauce

  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 6 tbsp heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp salt

Directions for Filling

1. Cut up dried apricots. Place in food processor and process to a paste.
2. Add butter, canned pumpkin, light brown sugar, egg, vanilla extract, and pumpkin pie spice.
3. Process until blended. Place filling in a large bowl and set aside.

Directions for Dough

1. Preheat oven to 350 F (175C). Grease two cookie baking trays and set aside.
2. Place dry ingredients (flour, semolina, salt) in a bowl and whisk together. Set aside.
3. Prepare dough in Kitchen-Aid mixer; does not work in Cuisinart Food Processor.
4. Combine butter and granulated sugar in a large mixing bowl. Cream until light and fluffy.
5. Beat in egg. Add brandy and vanilla extract and mix until fully incorporated.
6. Gradually add dry ingredients until dough pulls away from side of bowl.
7. Pour dough out onto floured board and knead until smooth, about 5 minutes.
8. Pinch off pieces of dough 1 ½ inches in diameter.
9. Shape into balls. Pat into 3-inch circles.
10. Place 1 tbs. filling in center of each circle.
11. Pull edges of circle over filling and pinch together to enclose filling.
12. Place cookie in a decorative mold or tabi.
13. Pat down gently in mold.
14. Knock molded cookie out of mold dome-side up onto greased baking sheet.
15. Repeat with remaining dough circles and filling.
16. Bake 20-25 minutes or until bottom of cookies are pale golden.
17. Cool on a rack. Sprinkle generously with cinnamon powdered sugar while still warm.

Directions for Caramel Sauce

1. For sauce, in a small heavy saucepan, combine brown sugar, cream, butter and salt; bring to boil. Reduce heat; cook and stir 2-3 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla. Cool to room temperature. Place a generous helping of caramel sauce on place and center dome. Enjoy!

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