One of Kelly's best friends from high school sent me this photo last week with a touching note of how she came to have it.
"The reason I'm writing is that this picture (which I'm fairly sure is Kelly)
showed up in an old purse at my mom's house the other day.
...Kelly gave me this, I think it was probably back when you
moved to Laguna & Kelly and I would mail letters to
each other with locks of hair, pictures, & hilarious stories.
We must have exchanged baby pictures during that time.
In any case, I wanted you to have it on her birthday.
I think the fact that it just showed up after so many years
is Kelly letting us know she's still around.
Your daughter was one of those truly wonderful & warm & silly
individuals that always put a smile on my face."
So, with tears in my eyes, but a happy heart, I baked and came up with something pumpkin to remember all the good memories I have. (And, Lisa if you are reading this post, thank you for sending me the photo).
Autumn Double Delights
Chocolate~White Chocolate Chip Base
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups King Arthur all-purpose flour
1/2 cup Dutch-processed cocoa
1/2 tsp. Kosher salt
3/4 cup white chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350F-degrees. Lightly spray a 13" x 9" pan with baking spray. Set aside. In a stand mixer, using the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugars together until fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and mix together. Add the dry ingredients and beat until combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.
Place the dough in the baking pan and use floured finger tips to spread the dough.
Bake in the preheated over for 12 to 14 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool while you prepare the Pumpkin Chip Blondie mixture.
Pumpkin Chip Blondie:
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
4 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup King Arthur all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 pkg. Nestle's Pumpkin Chips
1 1/2 cups lightly toasted walnut, coarsely chopped
In a stand mixer, using the paddle attachment, beat the brown sugar and melted butter together to combine. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition to incorporate completely. Stir in the dry ingredients and 1 cup of the Pumpkin chips and half of the walnuts. Pour the mixture on top of the cookie base.
Sprinkle the remaining pumpkin chips and walnuts on top.
Bake an additional 25 minutes-tester should come out cleanly. Allow the bars to cool about 1 hour before cutting.