Pumpkin Bars with Salted Caramel Frosting
( bar recipe adapted from Land O'Lakes)
*printer friendly Recipe*
- 2 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
- 1 2/3 cups of sugar
- 2 EGGS
- 3/4 cup of butter (at room temperature)
- 1/3 cup Kahlúa liqueur (or milk)
- 1 1/4 tsp. of baking powder
- 1 1/4 tsp. of baking soda
- 1 tsp. of salt
- 1 tsp. of ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp. of all spice
- 1/2 tsp. of nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp. of ground cloves
- 1 (15oz) can of pumpkin
Frosting Ingredients (recipe from Foodess.com)
- 1 cup of sugar, divided in half
- 4 tbsp water
- 4 tbsp + 4 tsp cream
- 4 egg whites
- 2 tsp. of salt ( reduce the amount to 1tsp, if you prefer a sweeter caramel.)
- 1 cup of butter ( room temperature)
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- orange food colouring *optional*
Prepare the bars: Preheat the oven to 350F. and grease a 15x10x1-inch jelly-roll pan. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, all spice, nutmeg, and cloves. Set aside.
In a large bowl, beat the butter till soft and light. Add the sugar and beat to combine. Add the eggs one at a time beating well after each addition. Add the Kahlúa (or milk) and pumpkin and beat until smooth. Slowly add the flour mixture and beat on low speed until just combined.
Pour the batter into pan and bake for 25-35 minutes or until the center springs back when lightly touched. Mine only took 20 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely before frosting.
Make the frosting: Put 1/2 cup of sugar and water in saucepan over medium-high heat. Do not stir of you will get sugar crystals. Swirl the saucepan gently to distribute the heat. Cook until the mixture turns a medium to deep amber. Be careful not to overcook. As soon as it has reached the correct colour, remove from heat and slowly add the cream (careful - it will bubble up furiously). Stir until smooth and set aside.
Put the egg whites, salt, and 1/2 cup sugar in a double boiler. Whisk until sugar dissolves and mixture reaches 140 degrees. Transfer to bowl of standing mixer. Beat on high until stiff peaks form. Add butter a bit at a time, and continue beating on medium. Reduce speed to low, add vanilla extract, and then caramel (you may need to gently rewarm the caramel in the microwave for 10 seconds. Stop heating as soon as it softens enough to stir). Add food colouring (if using). Beat the mixture for 4-5 minutes.
Spread the frosting over the cooled pumpkin bars. Enjoy!