Chocolate Zucchini Whoopie Pies

It appears I’m on the less than quarterly posting schedule with this blog. Given everything I have on my to do list today, I can’t even begin to tell you why on earth I’m updating this blog today, BUT I made this “only kinda sorta my own” recipe the other day and I just feel like I should share as maybe someone else out there is tired of all their other Zucchini recipes:-)Besides, it’s a gorgeous evening, my family is gone and I’m sitting on my deck with my computer watching a little bunny and its parent or older sibling chase each other around, hopping the kids’ slip ‘n’ slide, ball equipment and more. At least I can be somewhat productive while I enjoy the night:-)

OK, back to the recipe at hand. We have a plethora of those green squash right now, and I’m not even growing any in my “garden” (aka the 12-inch by 5 foot patch of dirt on either side of my backdoor). Thanks to our CSA and some generous green-thumbed Zumba fanatics we’ve had zucchini to eat and bake with.

So, given my new clean eating attitude I decided to make some Chocolate Zucchini Whoopie Pies. “What,” you say? Indeed, these aren’t “clean” in the least but I made them myself and I enjoyed them. I’ll get back on the bandwagon sometime soon.

So, I found a few recipes that I merged to make these little treats:

I started with this recipe for Zucchini Whoopie Pies from “Not Without Salt”, but I still felt like I wanted them to be a bit more like the whoopie pies I remember first tasting as a kid — CHOCOLATE! So, I kept looking. And then, I found these Chocolate Zucchini Cake Cookies at The Baking Stone. Ah, yes put them together we have a only ever so slightly healthier treat than a regular chocolate whoopie pie:-)

Here’s my really great run down of what I did, complete with one-handed photos off my new point and shoot 🙂

Gather the following ingredients to put together the cakelike cookie portion of your treats:

Borrowing largely from “The Baking Stone” recipe, but slightly modified:

2/3 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour (I made the ww flour swap on the recipe.)
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup sugar
4 tbsp. butter, softened
one egg (I don’t think I’ve ever bought “small” eggs and I wasn’t sure if I could successfully “halve” an egg, so one large egg went in as is.)
3/4 tsp. vanilla
1 cup finely grated zucchini (I had grated mine earlier and it was not grated fine. It turned out just “fine” though)
1/8-1/4  C milk (not pictured because this was a last minute addition and I didn’t measure)

Preheat your oven to 350F and then get your baking sheets ready by lining them with parchment, unless like me, you own a pan specifically meant for Whoopie Pies! Yes, that would be one of those things that my husband thought was just going to clutter up our cupboards so one more reason that I better use it 🙂 So here it is:

Next up, dry ingredients…
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. I’ll be honest. I did actually do this in a separate bowl this time, but often times I don’t. I know you’re supposed to mix the dry separate but sometimes I’m just not that particular.

In a large bowl beat the butter and sugar together until it is light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and mix until smooth. Grate your zucchini, trying to press out any water or moisture it contains. (I squeezed the zucchini as much as possible…call it a zucchini stress ball.) Beat the zucchini  in and stir. Add the flour mixture and combine until smooth.

The dough was a bit too “thick” for me as I thought it should look a bit more like cake batter so I mixed in a little bit of milk at this point, probably not much  more than 1/8 C.

Scoop dough onto your prepared pans and allow room for them to spread a little. Bake the cookies for about 10 minutes, the tops should look dry. Allow the cookies to cool for 1 minute on your baking sheet and then cool them completely on a wire rack.

Someone in our house asked to eat these now. What?! Filling must be a part of the Whoopie Pie equation! So, on to that I went. For this, I went straight from the “Not Without Salt” recipe, and that meant I even made my own Marshmallow Fluff as my quasi-“clean” kitchen doesn’t currently house any high fructose corn syrup laden Marshmallows in any form.

So, start by making your own Fluff/Creme. If you would rather not, take this moment to pull your container of marshmallow fluffiness out of the cupboard and get it ready. Stop, think about what you’ll do with the 10 minutes of your life you are about to gain by not making your own fluff, and then continue on after this section of the recipe:-)
This made a bit less than 2 C.

3 egg whites
2/3 cup sugar

Use a double boiler or make one by bringing a small pot of water to a bare simmer, then place your stainless steel mixing bowl over the water. Add the egg whites and sugar, and whisk continuously until the sugar dissolves and the liquid is warm to the touch.

Remove the bowl from the boiler and use the whisk attachment on your stand or hand mixer to whip the liquid on medium-high speed until it is glossy and forms stiff peaks. According to the other recipe this should have been about 8 minutes. After about 10-11 minutes, I decided the not-quite-stiff-peaks were good enough for me:-)

Now it’s time to make the filling with your new fluff (or use the stuff in the tub from the store;-)

You will need:
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 cups confectioners sugar
2 cups marshmallow creme/fluff (I’m curious, is “Fluff” like Xerox & Kleenex and “creme” is the “photocopy” or “facial tissue” version?)
1 teaspoon vanilla

Beat together butter, confectioners sugar then add in the marshmallow fluff, and vanilla in a bowl with electric mixer at medium speed until smooth, about 3 minutes.

Now, slap those pies together by spreading a rounded tablespoon of that filling on the flat sides of half of cakes and top with remaining cakes.

YUM! At least I thought they were. Time for the real test:

They passed the test from all 4onProspect! We didn’t have these very long (and for all that work, they don’t make that many!) I think you can store them for a short while, but really, who needs to if you’re just going to gobble them up anyhow. But, if you’re not sweet starved like I was you can store these in the fridge. I would like to say I know what the yield was, but they were gone so fast I don’t know. 12-15, maybe! We did share a few though!

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