Pumpkin Dulce de Leche Swirl Brownies

Pumpkin Dulce de Leche Swirl Brownies with Chocolate Chips

I love pumpkin! It’s one of my all time favorite things and this time of year I love to make sweets and treats, not to mention savory dishes like soup or ravioli with pumpkin. It seems in the fall I always have pumpkin on the brain and these brownies popped in to my mind when I saw a recipe for a chocolate/caramel type brownie and my imagination just went crazy from there!

These brownies are brownie like, all while having a slight essence and texture of pumpkin pie. The caramel gives the brownie a subtle hint of something wonderful, without overpowering the whole and the chocolate chips give it just the right oomph to finish off the dish. It’s an all around perfect combination!

What You’ll Need:
1 – 14 ounce can of sweetened condensed milk
1 – 15 ounce can of pumpkin
1/2 cup of organic cane sugar
6 tablespoons of butter, softened
1 teaspoon of vanilla
3 eggs
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1 teaspoon of sea salt
1 cup of unbleached all purpose flour
1/2 of a bag of semisweet chocolate chips1 teaspoon of cinnamon

First you want to make your dulce de leche. There are a few ways to do this with a can of sweetened condensed milk. You can boil a can of sweetened condensed milk in a large stock pot for an hour and a half to two hours (the longer you boil it the thicker it is), making sure the can stays covered with water the whole time, or you can empty a can of sweetened condensed milk into a double boiler and simmer for up to 2 hours until the milk becomes caramely. I chose the double boiler method this go around. Once your dulce de leche is made you mix up the brownies.

Preheat oven to 350 F.

In a large mixing bowl beat together pumpkin, sugar, butter, vanilla and eggs until smooth. Add baking powder, salt, cinnamon and flour and mix until incorporated.

Pour mixture into an 12 X 8 inch baking dish that has been sprayed with nonstick spray. Add dollops of the dulce de leche to the top of the pumpkin mixture in the dish and use a spoon or knife to swirl into the brownie batter. Finally sprinkle the top of the brownies with the chocolate chips.

Bake for 22-25 minutes. Let cool at least 30 minutes before serving.

Notes: You can use a different kind of chocolate chips if you like, white chocolate chips especially would be good with this. You can also purchase dulce de leche to use in this recipe if you don’t want to make it yourself.

Pumpkin Trifle

Pumpkin Trifle

Every October my mom and my best friend Darlene come to visit for a week around my birthday. This year that week happened to be last week. We spend the week goofing off, laughing and generally having a fabulous time. Some years they are here on my actual birthday, other years like this year, they are not, but it’s a lot of fun and something I look forward to all year long.

The day after Mom and Darlene arrived I had a little lunch party after church so that a friend of mine here could meet Darlene and my sister could come pick up my mom to spend a few days with her in Virginia. Given it was fall I decided I wanted to make a pumpkin pound cake that I love to make around this time of year.

I mixed up my pound cake, put it in the oven and baked it. I left it turned upside down in the pan on a plate after it cooled, so that it wouldn’t dry out overnight. When I removed the pan it stripped the sides of the cake with it. My OCD couldn’t handle serving my guests something that looked like someone, or something, had torn in to the sides of the cake, so my mind started working on an alternative and a few minutes later I had the perfect solution…A Trifle!

This is a very simple thing to put together, but it’s impressive all by itself. I decided to spice up the whipped cream a bit too and this really turned out to be the quintessential autumn dessert!

First Step: Bake your pumpkin pound cake and let cool.

Next Step: Make your Cinnamon Brown Sugar Maple Whipped Cream!

What You’ll Need for the Cinnamon Brown Sugar Maple Whipped Cream:
2 cups of heavy cream
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/3 cup natural brown sugar
1/4 cup of maple syrup

Dump all ingredients in to the bowl of a mixer. Beat on high until soft peaks form.

Set aside to use for your Pumpkin Trifle. (See below.)

And Then: Assemble your trifle!

What You’ll Need to make the Pumpkin Trifle:
Pumpkin pound cake
Cinnamon Brown Sugar Maple Whipped Cream (see above) Caramel sauce (Note: You can make your own or use pre-made from the store. I used store bought this go around, but you could use the caramel sauce from this recipe instead.)

Once cake is cooled cut it into chunks. (Note: You might not need all of the cake, depending on the size of bowl you put your trifle in. I like to cut the chunks for each layer as I go.)

Place a layer of pound cake chunks in the bottom of a clear glass trifle dish or bowl. Once you have your layer of pound cake add a layer of your whipped cream and spread it out evenly over the pound cake chunks. Repeat these steps until you reach the top of your bowl

Top the last layer of pound cake with a generous mound of whipped cream. Drizzle the top generously with caramel sauce and let sit for at least 30 minutes before serving so the flavors meld a bit.

Last Step: Eat and enjoy!

Store unused portions of the dessert in the fridge.

Notes: You could use this method with regular pounds cake and top it with any number of topping/whipped cream varieties of your choice. I have a blueberry version floating around in my head that you may see soon.