Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake

I’m not a fan of pumpkin pie. I don’t dislike pumpkin, I just don’t really like pumpkin pie. A bite, yes. A whole piece…bor-ing. Now cheesecake, I love. That’s a dessert! But at the holidays, I'm not one to break too far from tradition. That is why I recognize the time-honored partnership of pumpkin dessert and Thanksgiving by serving this Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake. In it’s 5th year on my Thanksgiving dessert table, it’s still a favorite.

This year I used the food processor to make the whole cheesecake, starting with the crust. I began by crushing 2 cups of gingersnaps. This food processor thing was way easier than hammering away at bagged gingersnaps with my meat mallet.

Then I chopped ½ cup of pecans

Then I added 6 tablespoons of butter and gave that a whirl.

Then I pressed the crust mixture into the bottom and about 1 inch up the sides of a 9 inch springform pan.

Next I beat the cream cheese and part of the sugar

Then added the eggs, one at a time.

And the vanilla.

Reserve 1 ½ cup of the “plain” mixture

Now add an additional ¼ cup of sugar, the pumpkin, and the spices to the remaining cream cheese mixture

Beginning with the pumpkin mixture, pour ½ onto the gingersnap crust.

Now top with ½ of the plain. Repeat the layers.

Cut through several times with a knife for the swirling effect.

Bake at 300 degrees for 55 minutes or until center is set. Refrigerate for at least 4hours or overnight.

Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake
2 cups crushed gingersnaps
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
6 tablespoons melted butter

Stir together and press into the bottom of a 9 inch spring-form pan.

3 pkgs. cream cheese
1 cup sugar, divided
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 eggs
1 cup canned pumpkin
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
dash ground cloves

Beat cream cheese, 3/4 cup of sugar, and vanilla until combined. Add eggs one at a time. Mix on low until just blended. Reserve 1 1/2 cups of the plain batter. Stir in remaining 1/4 cup of sugar, pumpkin, and spices into the remaining batter. Spoon 1/2 pumpkin batter over the crust. Top with plain batter. Repeat pumpkin layer. Cut through several times with a knife. Bake at 300 degress for 55 minutes. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.

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