Pumpkin Pie Squares

 Pumpkin Pie Squares

PumpkinSquares570 Pumpkin Pie Squares

These pumpkin squares are easier to make than pumpkin pie and they are firm enough to be eaten as finger food. They are great by themselves, or add a bit of Macadamia-Vanilla Frosting for a little “Happy Holidays.”
adobe pdf icon Pumpkin Pie Squares

Pumpkin Pie Squares
Makes 9 to 16 squares (depending on how small you cut them)

Ingredients

  • 10 medjool dates, pitted and diced (about 1 cup diced)
  • 34 cup water
  • 1 ½ cups rolled oats, ground into flour (see notes below)
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (or see notes below)
  • 1 15 ounce can cooked pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix), (or one and a half cups cooked, pureed pumpkin; see notes below)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup non-dairy milk of your choice

Instructions:
Place the 10 pitted and diced dates into a small bowl with the 34 cup of water and soak for at least 15 minutes.

Place the flour and Pumpkin Pie spice in a large bowl. In a blender, blend the soaked dates, the date soak water, the vanilla, and the non-dairy milk until smooth (1-2 minutes). Pour this into the bowl of flour/spices, and also add the pumpkin, and mix with a wooden spoon until all the dry ingredients are incorporated.

Scrape batter into an 8×8-inch baking pan that is lined with parchment paper (or use a non-stick silicone baking pan). Cook for 25-30 minutes at 375ºF. (If you see a light browning and some cracks on the top, these are good indications that it’s done.) Let cool at least 10-15 minutes before cutting and serving. Optional: Finish with Macadamia-Vanilla Frosting (recipe below) just before serving, or top with a light dusting of grated macadamia or other nuts (using a rotary cheese grater). Storing in the refrigerator overnight will firm up these squares, then you can pack them in a lunch or as a snack.

Preparation: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes

Macadamia-Vanilla Frosting
Makes about 1 cup 

This frosting has a somewhat maple flavor to it. You can use it right after making it, or if you want to use a cake decorating tip (like in the top photo), put the frosting in the refrigerator for 30 minutes first.

Ingredients: 

  • ½ cup Macadamia nuts soaked in ½ cup of water for 15-30 minute
  • 6 Medjool dates, pitted and diced, soaked in ½ cup of water for 15-30 minutes
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions:
Drain the soak water off of the nuts and discard it. In a blender, blend all of the ingredients (nuts, dates with their soak water, and vanilla) until smooth and even in color. Add a little more water as needed to keep the blender moving if it gets too thick.

Chef’s Notes: 

Using fresh pumpkin: If you want to use fresh pumpkin instead of canned, cut the pumpkin in half lengthwise, remove all the seeds and stringy fibers, and then place cut-side down in a baking pan. Bake at 350ºF for approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour (depending on size) or until easily pierced with a knife. Scoop out the pumpkin flesh, and puree in a food processor until smooth. If you want to extract the excess liquid (this will result in a firmer dessert), line a regular kitchen strainer with cheesecloth and strain the liquid off the pumpkin puree. I have also scooped the pureed pumpkin into the center of a large piece of cheesecloth, tied it off at the top, and hung it up to drain over a bowl for a couple hours. Cool the puree before using.

Pumpkin pie spice substitution: If you do not have pumpkin pie spice on hand, you can substitute with 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon, ½ teaspoon nutmeg, 1/8 teaspoon clove; or a close approximation.

Oat flour: You can easily grind rolled oats into flour by using any blender; high-speed blenders produce the finest flour, but any blender will do. (A food processor is least effective.)

Pans: I use an 8×8-inch Pyrex pan here, but you can also use a lined pie or cake pan, and then cut the pieces to look like pumpkin pie slices.

Texture: For a firmer texture without refrigerating overnight, only use 1/2 cup of the date soak water (instead of 34 cup).
adobe pdf icon Pumpkin Pie Squares

Cathy Fisher

Cathy Fisher

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