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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The best ways to eat pumpkin

Since last month, I've been exploring the uses of pumpkin. I asked myself, "Do I only eat pumpkin pie and pumpkin cookies because 'tis the season? Or do I actually like food made from pumpkin?" As a result, I have discovered and thoroughly enjoyed desserts like Joanna's pumpkin sheet cake with cream cheese frosting and pecans, my fried pumpkin donut holes with glaze, and Amy's pumpkin cookies which don't need chocolate chips to taste amazing! So for Thanksgiving, instead of the same old slimy pumpkin pie, I made a pumpkin cheesecake, a la Cheesecake Factory. So good! The taste makes you think you're eating pumpkin pie, but the texture is heavenly and smooth. Pumpkin pie used to be the healthiest dessert on the Thanksgiving table...
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
5 tablespoons butter, melted
1 cup sugar, plus
1 tablespoon sugar
3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup canned pumpkin
3 eggs
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon allspice
whipped cream
1 Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2 Make the crust by combining the graham cracker crumbs with the melted butter and 1 T sugar in a medium bowl.
3 Stir well enough to coat all of the crumbs with the butter, but not so much as to turn the mixture into paste.
4 Keep it crumbly.
5 Put foil partway up the outside part of an 8-inch springform pan. (I didn't do this)
6 Press the crumbs onto the bottom and about two-thirds of the way up the sides of the springform pan.
7 You don't want the crust to form all of the way up the back of each slice of cheesecake.
8 Bake the crust for 5 minutes, then set aside until you are ready to fill it.
9 In a large mixing bowl combine the cream cheese, 1 C sugar, and vanilla.
10 Mix with an electric mixer until smooth.
11 Add the pumpkin, eggs, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice and continue beating until smooth and creamy.
12 Pour the filling into the pan.
13 Bake for 60-70 minutes.
14 The top will turn a bit darker at this point.
15 Remove from the oven and allow the cheesecake to cool.
16 When the cheesecake has come to room temperature, put it into the refrigerator.
17 When the cheesecake has chilled, remove the pan sides and cut the cake into 8 equal pieces.
18 Serve with a generous portion of whipped cream on top.


Tina and Dan said...

Mmmmmmm! Looks SO GOOD! My mouth is watering!

Jaime Lynne said...

My mouth is watering even now. Great pic!

Frances wallace said...

i miss Lovita and Megan helping me make Thanksgiving dinner. I hope we all have a holiday together again. Great memories!

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