You must make whoopie. Sorry, couldn't resist the innuendo there. But, I'm serious. You must make whoopie, pies that is. From what I've gathered they're a strictly an east coast treat, a popular New England confection. Being raised on the west, and never having stepped foot near the East, I'm not entirely sure how I became familiar with whoopie pies. Other food blogs is one culprit I'm sure. The other is likely the stack of cookie books I've acquired (if you didn't know this already, cookies are in my top three all time favorite desserts). I stumbled across this recipe on Baking Bites that was from a book I already had dubbed The Good Cookie. This truly is a good cookie. I did alter it a bit. Not the cake ('cookie') recipe, but the filling. Since we're getting so close to Christmas (9 days, yikes!) I knew I wanted to make something that hearkened the approaching Holiday. So, instead of the traditional vanilla filling I made a cream cheese filling, and sprinkled it with crushed candy cane. I was impressed. I can understand why the New York Times declared the whoopie pie was the next cupcake. It's not. Sorry, but nothing can beat the cuteness or the versatility of a cupcake. But I will say, I have never made a chocolate cupcake as moist as these little chocolate discs. The texture and flavors were outstanding. Sweet, but not explode your tastebuds sweet. Moist and soft. It's as if my two favorite desserts, cake and cookie, got together and made a perfect little dessert baby. So, if you've never made these little gems, I highly recommend you do, whether or not you go traditional with the filling (sans the cream cheese and peppermint) or not.
Recipe : Chocolate Whoopie Pies
2 cups AP flour
1 cup coco powder
3/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup room temp. butter
1 cup sugar
1 large egg yolk
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup hot water
1/2 buttermilk (I made my own, 1/2 cup whole milk with 1/2 Tablespoon of Cider vinegar added)
1 batch cream cheese filling (recipe below)
3 candy candes, crushed
1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Line baking sheet with Silpat or parchment.
2. In a medium sized bowl whisk flour, salt, and cocoa powder together. Add baking powder to hot water and stir.
3. In the bowl of an electric mixer cream together the butter and sugar on medium-high speed for 3 minutes, until light and creamy.
4. Add egg yolk and vanilla and mix until well combined.
5. Starting with the flour: add a bit of flour, then a bit of buttermilk, then a bit of milk. Repeat. Be sure you start and end with flour and do not overmix or the cake will get 'heavy'. This might sound complicated, I promise you, it's not.
6. I used a melon baller to scoop up equal amounts (about a teaspoon) of dough and drop onto prepared baking sheet about 1/4 inch a apart.
7. Bake cookies 5-7 minutes. The tops will crack.
8. Cool completely before filling.
9. Fill each cookie with a healthy schmear of cream cheese filling, dust with candy cane.
Cream Cheese Filling:
2 cups good powdered sugar
4 Tbs room temperature butter
4 oz. cream cheese
2 Tbs heavy cream
pinch of salt
1. In the bowl of an electric mixer add sugar, butter, and cream cheese. Mix on slow speed at first, increasing the speed as the sugar mixes in.
2. Add cream and salt and mix until smooth.
3. Pipe or spread about a teaspoon inside each cookie.