Monday, March 14, 2011

Happy (Whoopie) Pie Day!

At work I am lucky enough to get free meals.  I don't think this practice is that common outside of silicon valley, but out here it seems pretty standard at tech companies.  The way to my heart is definitely through my stomach, and the food at work has been consistently amazing.  I've tried new grains (spelt, teff, etc), meats (or meat substitutes) prepared in unusual ways, and new kinds of vegetables.  However it was a dessert that caught my attention the other day - a banana whoopie pie.  I emailed the chef team and got the recipe.  The next weekend I made them on a sunny Sunday afternoon.

First I had to make the dough - banana and sour cream meant a light, moist, banana cake.
kitchen aid at work

Next the dough was placed into a piping bag.  I accidentally overfilled mine and had to use a tall drinking glass to hold it when not in use.

piping bag at work
Next they were piped onto a silpat - 1.5 inches in diameter.
pre-oven
post oven

After they were cool, I prepared a cake plate with powered sugar (so they wouldn't stick) and started to fill them with a cream cheese and sugar frosting.  I should say that I very strongly dislike cream cheese, but I made an exception here.  They were too good!
laying the scene
After they were filled, I started to pile them up on the cake plate.
the base of a yummy pyramid 
The finished product!  Ross and Abby were coming over for dinner, and it was the perfect dessert to share with foodie friends over hot chocolate at the end of the meal.
the perfect end to a good day
In honor of pie day (3.14), I thought I'd share the recipe with you.  So for those of you looking for a great new recipe for banana whoopie pies, here it is!  Thanks to Chef Pauline for sharing it with me! 

ingredients

Makes about 3 dozen.
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup mashedbanana (from 1 large ripebanana)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 16 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar, plus more for dusting


Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a bowl. Combine banana and sour cream in another bowl.
  2. Beat butter and granulated and brown sugars with a mixer on medium-high speed, until pale and creamy, about 3 minutes. Add egg and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, beating until incorporated. Add banana mixture in 2 additions, alternating with flour mixture.
  3. Transfer batter to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/4-inch plain tip. Pipe batter into 1 1/4-inch rounds on baking sheets, spacing rounds 1 1/2 inches apart.
  4. Bake until edges are golden, about 12 minutes. Slide parchment, with cookies, onto wire racks. Let cool. (Unfilled cookies can be stored for up to 1 day.)
  5. Beat cream cheese, confectioners' sugar, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon vanilla with a mixer on medium speed until smooth, about 2 minutes.
  6. Pipe or spoon 1 tablespoon cream cheese mixture onto the flat sides of half the cookies. Sandwich with remaining cookies. Dust with confectioners' sugar, and serve immediately.

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