Monday, November 17, 2008

Pumpkin White Chocolate Chip Blondies

Last night, my church held a Celebration of New Ministry service for our new rector who arrived at the end of August. It was a formalized ritual way of welcoming and installing him as our rector and praying that God will guide him and us in this new partnership. It was an extremely moving and beautiful service. The bishop was there with his miter and crook. A female ordained Methodist minister gave the sermon. The choir sang. And then afterward, like any good church people, we ATE!

A few words about this church: The community itself is very old, dating back to Civil War-era, when our congregation split off from the Cathedral because the people wanted a free-pew church (meaning your yearly pledge would not determine where you sat. You didn't have to "rent" a pew by pledging). Ever since then, the congregation has taken difficult stands, often against the status quo, in order to follow where they felt the Gospel was calling them. For instance, it is not unusual in the congregation for a lesbian couple, with their daughter, to take up the offering. Or to see a man with full-sleeve tattoos sitting next to a lawyer in a suit. Anyway, the old historic building itself was destroyed in the late '90s by a tornado, so for the time being, we worship in a room with an altar that also serves as a multi-purpose room. So once the service finished, the room was transformed into a banquet hall in about five minutes.

By virtue of my last name, I was designated to bring a dessert, and I'm always looking for an excuse to cook. I found these on Cate's blog last week and knew I had to make them. They were delicious, but I was in a bit of a rush and didn't quite let them cool enough, so they ended up a little ugly-looking as I was trying to get them ready to go.

Pumpkin White Chocolate Chip Blondies
(source: Cate's Kitchen)

2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
1 tablespoon pumpkin-pie spice
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
1 package (12 ounces) white chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Line bottom and sides of a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with foil, leaving an overhang on all sides.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, pie spice, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
With an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar on medium-high speed until smooth; beat in egg and vanilla until combined. Beat in pumpkin puree (mixture may appear curdled). Reduce speed to low, and mix in dry ingredients until just combined. Fold in chocolate chips.
Spread batter evenly in prepared pan. Bake until edges begin to pull away from sides of pan and a toothpick inserted in center comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached, 30 to 40 minutes. Cool completely in pan.
Lift cake from pan (using foil as an aid). Peel off foil, and use a serrated knife to cut into squares.


Erin said...

Those look YUMMY! I don't know that I could ever tire of pumpkin.

Cate said...

I'm glad you like them! I think I'm going to make them again this week because they are just sooo good! And you gotta love church many Presbyterian potlucks did I stuff myself at growing up!?!