Saturday, October 20, 2012

Pumpkin Spice Truffle Kisses

Trick or treat?  Treat!  Who would ever choose "trick" when a plate filled with Pumpkin Spice Truffle Kisses are the treat in question?  Yeah, that's what I

These treats are kind of a traditional crinkle cookie with a twist of pumpkin pie spice and espresso powder, topped with those hard-to-find Hershey's Pumpkin Spice Kisses.  They are so good!  But not easy to find.  As soon as Halloween candy starts to hit Target, WalMart and such, Mark and I both scout the aisles to score our holiday supply!

The recipe doesn't make a lot, only 2 dozen, but they are so chocolate-y rich and chewy that popping one of these pretty cookies into your mouth instantly satisfies your chocolate cravings...and leaves a contented jack-o-lantern grin behind.

 Pumpkin Spice Truffle Cookies

  • 12 ounces chocolate chips, I like Ghiradelli dark chocolate chips - more chocolate-y, less waxy than Nestles
  • 3 egg whites
  • 2 cups confectioner's sugar, divided
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons espresso powder, instant
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt

  • 24 Hershey kisses, pumpkin spice variety - find these early before the Halloween season starts because they're hard to find later!

  • 1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder, instant
  • 1 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Measure out 1 cup of the chocolate chips and set the rest aside.  Melt the chips in a double boiler over simmering water.  Set aside to cool slightly while you do the rest.

Using a mixer, beat the egg whites to soft peaks.  At slow speed, add 1 cup of the confectioner's sugar and mix until well-incorporated.  Beat at high speed until thick.  

Lower the speed to low again and add another cup of confectioner's sugar, cocoa powder, espresso powder, pumpkin pie spice and Kosher salt.  When these ingredients are well incorporated, raise the mixer speed to medium and beat until thick again.  

Add the melted chocolate chips and continue beating at medium speed until all the ingredients are mixed well and become a dough.  Finally, add the reserved chips and gently, but thoroughly, incorporate them into the dough.

Meanwhile, stir a teaspoon of espresso powder and 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice together with 1/2 cup confectioner's sugar in a small bowl until well mixed.  Set Aside.

Using a large (1 tablespoon) cookie baller, scoop the dough into 24 balls.  Roll each until smooth and immediately roll in the sugar/espresso powder/pumpkin pie spice mixture.  

Set 12 balls on each cookie sheet, spaced evenly, and bake for 15 minutes.  Remove from oven and immediately sink a pumpkin spice Hershey's kiss into the center of each cookie.  Set the sheets on cooling racks and let the cool completely.  Do not store these until the Hersey's kiss is completely cooled and SET again.  You don't want any smooshed kisses! (That's "smooshed" not smooched...everybody likes smooches!)

Store in an airtight tin with wax paper or plastic wrap between each layer so the powdery cookies don't make the kisses powdery too.  Keep your kisses clean!

NOTE:  These are naturally gluten-free!

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