Back this spring, I randomly made a pumpkin cheesecake. It was pretty good. And by pretty good, I mean it was really good…because it was pumpkin + cheesecake= winning combination.
Sadly, a week or so ago, I had to say a temporary goodbye to two new but close friends of BOOF, TiatheCowgirl and MaxtheAgMan. They are headed back home to the Cowboy state of Oklahoma, and since we were having a Thanksgiving feast of sorts (pre Thanksgiving), I found out that Tia’s favorite dessert is cheesecake and Max’s favorite is anything with pecans, so I wanted to whip up something special that encompassed both.
I got to searching and just threw in “Pecan Cheesecake” in epicurious and was met with a recipe for a Puumpkin Pecan Cheesecake and I was immediately sold. I mean, not only did it include the pecan and the cheesecake components, but then it also added pumpkin?!?! So much WINNING.
As I found when I made this cheesecake filling, I had enough for two 9 inch cheesecakes which honestly is a really good thing because this dessert is so tasty, you’ll wonder what happened to it. The recipe is simple and straight forward and I made a couple of changes, but I don’t think it took away from the flavor at all.
Adapted from Epicurious
For the Praline
1/2 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans
For the Crust
2 cups gingnersnap cookie crumbs
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup unsalted butter (1/2 stick), melted
4 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
4 large eggs
1 15-ounce can solid pack pumpkin
1 teaspoon rum extract (the original recipe called for 3 tablespoons bourbon)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1) Preheat oven to 325°F. Line baking sheet with foil.
2) Stir sugar and butter in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat until sugar melts and mixture comes to boil; boil 1 minute without stirring.
3) Mix in pecans.
4) Spread mixture on prepared baking sheet. Bake until sugar syrup bubbles vigorously, about 8 minutes.
5) Cool praline completely and break into pieces.
1) Preheat oven to 325°F.
2) Stir cookie crumbs and cinnamon in medium bowl to blend. Add butter; stir until crumbs are moistened. I pulsed this in my food processor to save time…worked like a charm.
3) Press onto bottom and 1 inch up sides of 9-inch-diameter springform pan (I don’t own a springform pan, so I use a regular pie plate).
4) Bake crust until set, about 8 minutes and cool.
5) Double-wrap outside of pan with heavy-duty foil. Place in large roasting pan.
1) Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar in large bowl until smooth.
2) Beat in dry ingredients: flour and spices.
3) Beat in eggs 1 at a time. Beat in pumpkin, rum extract and vanilla. Transfer to crust.
4) Pour enough hot water into roasting pan to reach 1 inch up sides of pie plate/springform pan.
5) Bake cake in water bath until center is just set, adding more water to roasting pan as needed, about 1 hour- 1hour and half.
6) Remove cheesecake from water.
7) Cool in pan on rack. Remove foil. Run small sharp knife between cake and pan sides.
8) Chill until cold; then cover and chill overnight.
9) Sprinkle praline over, leaving 1-inch plain border at edge. Cut cake into wedges.
10) Share and Enjoy!!!!
This was a big hit. The flavor is strong, the crunch from the praline perfectly complements the creamy pumpkin cheesecake and the whole thing just works. I made the 2nd cheesecake for my co-workers and it was raved about there too…so I am assuming that it actually is pretty good. It is actually a recipe that I would make time and time again…especially during the holiday season.