Most families have Thanksgiving dinner down to a science and the menu does not vary much from year to year. I think this is especially true for desserts. Obviously, pumpkin pie is always on the menu and in my family we always have pecan pie as well. I went my entire childhood thinking I did not like pecan pie. I took a bite a few years ago and realized I was really missing out.
Pumpkin Pecan Shortbread is like the bar-cookie-child of pumpkin and pecan pie. I absolutely love shortbread, so I was crazy about this dessert. If you are not the pie-baking type bring this would be the perfect dessert to bring to Thanksgiving. It is super simple to make and very tasty.
The Perfect Pairing for this dessert is store bought caramel sauce. I am not a fan of super sweet desserts, so I prefer just a tiny drizzle but it definitely adds something to the bar cookie. I recommend serving the caramel on the side so everyone gets just the right amount for their tastes.
I hope you all have a blessed Thanksgiving!
Pumpkin Pecan Shortbread
Adapted by Lindsay at Perfecting the Pairing from Heather Christo
· 1 ½ cups flour
· ¾ cup powdered sugar
· 1 cup pecans, unsalted
· ½ tsp salt
· ¾ cup cold unsalted butter, cubed
· 15 oz can 100% pumpkin
· 1 1/3 cup sugar
· 1 Tb vanilla
· 2 tsp cinnamon
· ½ tsp nutmeg
· ¼ tsp ginger
· ½ tsp salt
· 2 eggs
· 2/3 cup cream
· Store bought caramel sauce, optional
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Add the flour, powdered sugar, pecans, and salt to the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until the nuts are chopped and the ingredients are combined. Add in the cubed butter and pulse until there are no large bits of butter. Press into the bottom of a 9x13 inch pan. Bake for 12 minutes.
In the same bowl of the food processor (no need to clean out) add all of the ingredients in the pumpkin layer. Pulse until smooth and combined. Pour the pumpkin mixture over the shortbread crust and spread with a spatula. Bake for 35-45 minutes, until the center has set. Allow to cool and refrigerate until ready to eat.
Serve with store bought caramel sauce, if desired.