My Tribute to Pumpkin …
I know it’s a bit overkill on the tribute bit, but I do actually
enjoy love obsess over this rugged, showy food. Pumpkin is crazy delish, and when I can add it to a dish to take advantage of the gorgeous flavor, I do. Sometimes savory, as in the Pumpkin Salsa I previously posted, or as in this case, SWEET!
So you may have wondered, is a pumpkin a vegetable? Nope. It indeed is a fruit, a berry to be more precise. If you want to read more about the humble pumpkin, try the ever so useful Wikipedia or the FAQ’s from The Pumpkin Farm, both very interesting reads.
I have always enjoyed a freshly baked Pumpkin Pie topped off with a creamy whipped topping and flaky crust. Now, I think I have managed to replace my holiday favorite pie with this, the Pumpkin Cheesecake. It has such an amazing taste, creamy texture and gorgeous crust. I love how the marbling shows through and I usually wait until I’m serving each piece and then top it with whipped cream, toasted pecans and CARAMEL.
Outstandingly gorgeous tasting!
I found this particular recipe from Taste of Home, and it was so good that I changed nothing in the recipe. Zilch. Nada. Nothing. So loads of brownie points to the creator of this recipe wherever and whomever you may be. Usually I tweak a recipe quite a bit and I love it when I find a recipe that stands on it’s own without a need for a swap, change or complete rebuild of the ingredients list.
Welcome to your New holiday favorite!
For the Crust:
- 1 cup Gingersnap cookies (about 20 cookies), crushed
- 1/3 cup Pecans, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup Butter (1/2 stick), melted
- 4 (8 oz) packages Cream Cheese, softened & divided
- 1-1/2 cups Sugar, divided
- 2 Tbls Cornstarch
- 2 tsp Vanilla extract
- 4 Eggs
- 1 cup canned Pumpkin
- 2 teaspoons ground Cinnamon
- 1-1/2 teaspoons ground Nutmeg
- Chocolate Syrup, Caramel Syrup (such as Bryers ice cream topping), Whipped Cream, crushed Gingersnap Cookies or Toasted Pecans.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9-in. springform pan then place pan on a double thickness of heavy-duty foil (@ 18 in. square). Wrap foil around outside of springform pan.
- In a small bowl, mix together Gingersnap crumbs, Pecans and Butter. Then press crumb mixture into the bottom of prepared springform pan.
- Put the pan on a on a baking sheet and bake for about 8-10 minutes or until set. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.
For the Cheesecake Filling:
- In a large bowl, beat 1 package of softened Cream Cheese, 1/2 cup Sugar and Cornstarch until smooth, for 2 - 3 minutes.
- Now beat in the remaining Cream Cheese, one block at a time until creamy and smooth. Now add the remaining Sugar and Vanilla until well blended, add in eggs using low setting on mixer, just until combined.
- In a small bowl, put in 2 cups filling and stir in the Pumpkin, Cinnamon, and Nutmeg.
- After adding in spices, remove 3/4 cup Pumpkin mixture and set aside. Now pour the remaining Pumpkin filling over crust and top with the remaining Plain filling. With a knife, use it to swirl the mixture to marble. Now drop the last of the reserved Pumpkin filling by spoonfuls over the marbled cheesecake filling and again gently cut through with a knife to swirl mixture.
- Carefully place the springform pan in a large baking pan, such as a roasting pan, and add about 1 in. of hot water to the bottom of the roasting pan to make a water bath.
- Bake in pre-heated 350°F for 55-65 minutes or until the center is just set and top appears flat and dull.
- Carefully remove the springform pan from the water bath.
- Allow to cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Gently run a knife around edge of the springform pan to loosen cheesecake, then allow to cool 1 hour longer.
- Refrigerate overnight.
- Optional: You can garnish with Chocolate Syrup, Caramel Sauce, Whipped Cream, Crushed Gingersnaps or Toasted Pecans if desired.
Stacey is a Southern girl with a taste for travel, thriving on the discovery of the world through food. After spending many years traveling and living overseas, she’s now back home in her beloved deep south enjoying life with her three little ones and loving the adventure. She’s a food stylist and food photographer, as well as, the creative behind Little Figgy Food, where she loves to inspire others to try new flavors and foodie techniques.