November 27, 2009

Pumpkin Cheesecake

(see my notes at the bottom)

1 1/2 C gingersnap crumbs (about 25-30 small cookies)
6 tbsp. real butter, melted
3 tbsp. brown sugar
3/4 C ground pecans
3 8oz blocks cream cheese
3/4 C canned pumpkin puree
8oz melted white chocolate (1 C white chocolate chips, melted)
1 C sugar
3 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

Preheat oven to 350. Using heavy duty foil, securely wrap the bottom and outside of your cheesecake pan. This will prevent leaks when using the water bath. For Crust: Use a food processor to crush gingersnaps. Then do pecans. Combine gingersnaps, pecans, brown sugar, and butter and stir well to combine. Press into a 9" spring form pan. Evenly spread across the bottom of pan and up the sides about 1-1 1/2 inches.

To melt chocolate, place in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave at 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until smooth. Set aside. With an electric mixer beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time. Add pumpkin, vanilla, and pumpkin pie spice. With the mixer running, slowly add in white chocolate in a steady stream. Pour mixture on top of the crust.

For waterbath: Place cheesecake pan inside of a larger pan. (Like a roasting pan.) The larger pan should be at least 2-3 inches in depth. Place in pre-heated oven. With a kettle or pitcher filled with hot water, pour water into the larger pan about halfway up, or approximately 1 1/2 to 2 inches. Bake for about 50 minutes or until set. The center should be just a tad bit jiggly still. It will finish cooking while cooling. When it's done, remove from oven and place on a rack until completely cool. Place in the fridge for at least 12 hours. Serve with whipped cream and caramel sauce!

NOTES: Since Carson in allergic to pecans, I omitted those from the crust. I also do not have a roasting pan, so I filled a cake pan with water and placed it below the cheesecake. I don't know if that's what you're supposed to do, but I think it worked! And finally, buy "Anna's" ginger cookies (flower shaped). I bought them to decorate the top with, and they are amazing. I wish I would have done the crust with them, because the ginger snaps I bought for the crust were bland and extremely hard. I thought I was going to break my food processor.

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