Spiced pumpkin mini tarts


1 pkg. refrigerated pie crusts
1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin
2 c. cool whip, thawed
1 t. pumpkin pie spice**
1 pkg. (3.4 oz.) cheesecake instant pudding and pie filling
Confectioners’ sugar
¼ c. chopped pecans
1 small orange, zested

Preheat oven to 400* F. Allow pie crusts to thaw at room temperature for 15 minutes. Roll pie crust into 12 inch circle. Using a 31/2" scalloped cutter, cut out 12 pastry pieces (9 from outer edge and 3 from center of circle). Press 1 into each cup of a mini-muffin pan. Prick bottom of pastry. Bake 14-18 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand 5 minutes. Remove tart shells from pan to cooling rack; cool complete. Repeat with remaining crust to make 24 tart shells. Combine pumpkin, whipped topping, and spice in bowl. Whisk until smooth. Add pudding mix; whisk until smooth and thickened. Refrigerate until ready to use. Lightly sprinkle tart shells with powdered sugar from shaker. Pipe pumpkin mixture into shells with the star tip of a decorating device. Sprinkle pecans over tarts and top with orange zest.
** You may make your own spice blend using cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and ginger (optional: ground orange peel and cloves).