Grand finales – Thanksgiving desserts


I don’t think a lot of fluffy language has to accompany dessert. Everyone is too busy stuffing their faces with all of it.

Pumpkin pie and mini cheesecakes with dollops of freshly whipped cream

Pumpkin pie and mini cheesecakes with dollops of freshly whipped cream

Far too rich and heavy for a normal person (except maybe on Thanksgiving), I give you the apple caramel pecan cheesecake.

And the final step in pumpkin pie – prepping and eating!

I realized as I was making the sweet potato casserole and, more importantly, the pumpkin pie that I, the consummate baker, had somehow let myself run out of ground ginger! Luckily I had fresh ginger from last week’s carrot soup – but what was I thinking?

Ginger cookies with pumpkin spice kisses



Somehow when you affix a normal chocolate Hershey’s kiss to a peanut butter cookie, as I often do, it does not come out looking like a boob/nipple or at least the nipple part of a baby bottle. But when I made ginger cookies with some specialty, seasonal pumpkin spice kisses, a “boob cookie” is exactly what I got. Did it make them any less yummy? I guess not. A few people did rave about them. I can’t imagine why because the idea of a pumpkin spice kiss sounds disgusting – like a ball of beige-colored wax. No accounting for taste – I only make things sometimes because they are novel.

How to make the ginger cookies yourself?


2 cups flour
1/2 cup white sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons ground ginger
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1/4 cup water (or more as needed)
1/4 to 1/3 cup of molasses
1/3 cup butter
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder

Mix dry ingredients together and set aside. Mix butter, molasses, vanilla, grated fresh ginger and water together. (You can use between 1/4 and 1/3 cup of molasses. They have a strong flavor, so you can decide how much to use based on how strong a molasses taste you want to achieve.)

Combine the wet and dry ingredients and stir by hand. Keep stirring until a dough forms. If it is too dry, add more water, a couple of tablespoons at a time (do not overdo it) until the dough comes together and achieves a very soft clay-like consistency.

You can refrigerate the dough if you wish, but I didn’t.

Preheat oven to 375F. Roll dough in small balls and then roll in sugar. Press the dough balls flat with your hand or with the bottom of a glass dipped in sugar. Bake 9 to 10 minutes.

If you top with kiss candies as I did, you will want to bake these for four or five minutes first, and then get them out, quickly press the unwrapped candies into the tops, put them back in the oven and bake for about four more minutes. These melt easier than their chocolate predecessors, so you don’t want to overdo it.