Saturday, December 4, 2010

Pumpkin Cheesecake

Hello all my readers! It's the time of the year when everyone ramps up their baking. Today, I made a bit of a twist on a holiday favorite, pumpkin pie. That's not to say that I didn't make a pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving (I did!) but instead of giving you a recipe for that one, I decided to make a wonderful treat the combines two of my favorites: pumpkin pie and and cheesecake. Yup, pumpkin cheesecake.

Oh, before I go much farther, I do want to give this warning out to everyone. DO NOT BUY PUMPKIN PIE MIX! There is a BIG difference between pureed pumpkin and pumpkin pie mix. If you buy pumpkin pie mix and use it in this, or any of my recipes that call for pumpkin, it will turn out badly. The hard part is that the main company that makes pumpkin labels the two almost identically. The cans come in the same size and the labels are the same color. Watch the wording very carefully to make sure which one you buy.

Crust Ingredients:
2 cups crushed graham crackers
1/3 cup walnuts, finely chopped
1 1/2 Tablespoons sugar
3/4 cup of butter, melted.

Combine all the ingredients and press the whole thing down into the the bottom of your springform pan.

Cheesecake Ingredients:
3 8 oz packages of cream cheese
3/4 cup sugar
1 15 oz can of pureed pumpkin (NOT PUMPKIN PIE MIX)
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon cloves
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla.

Mix the cream cheese with the sugar. Add the pureed pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger and cloves and mix again. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix well. Pour the batter onto the the crust you made.

Bake the whole thing at 375 for 45 minutes. Be careful to 1. Preheat the oven (like always) and 2. Check your temperature! Today, I baked the thing at 325 for an hour, only to realize that  I'd been at the wrong temperature than where I'd wanted to be. I upped it to 350 for another 15 and it came out fine, but it's a lot easier if you just bake it at 375 for 45 minutes!

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