Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes

Thanksgiving is just a few days away!  I’m still planning the menu.  Here’s what I have so far: turkey, stuffing, and cranberries for sauce.  Joey recently made a killer carrot soup, so we may have that in shooters for an appetizer.  We need a few more side dishes, and a few desserts.

The week of Thanksgiving, many musicians in town are busy preparing for the Candlelight Processional show that’s held during the holidays at EPCOT.  (Yet another reason that EPCOT is my favorite park at Disney.)  For three nights, rehearsals take place in the wee hours of the morning to prepare for the performances.

As I’ve stated previously, musicians are suckers for free food.  Especially sweets.  Of a homemade variety.  During these late night rehearsal, morale can be a bit low.  Once 1:00 a.m. rolls around, the cold sets in (did I mentiont that rehearsals are outdoors?), and the energy lags.  People huddle around the coffee and hot chocolate.  What better way to boost morale than one of these bite-sized treats full of holiday cheer?

adapted from Gourmet, November 1999

Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes

Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes

Ingredients

Gingersnap Crust
1 c gingersnap crumbs
¼ c sugar
⅛ tsp salt
3 Tbs butter, melted
Cheesecake
9 oz. cream cheese (1 ½ blocks)
¾ c sugar
1 ½ Tbs flour
2 eggs
½ tsp vanilla
1 c pumpkin puree
1 egg yolk
½ tsp cinnamon
dash each of ginger, allspice, and nutmeg
1/8 tsp fresh lemon zest

Instructions

  1. For the crust: combine gingersnap crumbs, sugar, and salt in a bowl. Drizzle in butter and mix well. Press the mixture into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Set aside.
  2. For the cheesecake: Preheat oven to 350°F. Beat together the cream cheese, sugar, and flour. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well with each addition. Scrape the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla.
  3. Pour about 1 c of the cream cheese mixture into a separate bowl. Add the pumpkin puree, egg yolk, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, and nutmeg. Mix well.
  4. Mix the lemon zest into the remaining white cream cheese mixture.
  5. Pour half the cream cheese mixture over the gingersnap crust. Drizzle the pumpkin mixture over it. Drizzle the remaining cream cheese mixture on top of that. Swirl together with the edge of a butter knife to achieve a marble pattern.
  6. Place springform pan on top of a baking sheet. Bake in the center of the oven for 20 minutes. Reduce heat to 300°F, and bake another 35 minutes. Turn off the heat, open the oven door and let the cheesecake sit for another 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool completely.
  7. To form the mini cheesecakes: Remove the sides of the springform pan. Place cheesecake in the freezer for an hour. Remove from freezer, and dip a 1 ½ inch metal cutter (cookie cutter, biscuit cutter...) in warm water. Cut out rounds from the cheesecake. Dip the cutter periodically in the warm water to rinse it off. Use an offset spatula to help lift the cheesecake rounds off the base of the springform pan (if necessary.)
http://kokocooks.com/2012/11/mini-pumpkin-cheesecakes/

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Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake

 


 
Happy Thanksgiving! We are hosting a feast at our house this year. It will be my first time cooking a complete turkey. We are making appetizers, the bird, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, and dessert. Guests are contributing the rest of the dinner. I’m sure we will have loads of great food and company.

This is my absolute favorite cheesecake. I eagerly wait all year until it is the right season to eat it. I have made it every year for the past eight years. I love the gingersnap crust; it is just different enough, and it complements the pumpkin flavor. This year, I brought it to our extremely late night rehearsal for Candlelight. Hopefully it helped people stay awake. I realize that everyone has probably made (and eaten) their Thanksgiving desserts already, but this cheesecake is a winner for anytime during the holiday season.


Adapted from Marbled Pumpkin Cheesecake
Gourmet, November 1999

Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake

Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake

Ingredients

Crust
2 c finely ground gingersnap cookies
6 Tbs unsalted butter, melted
¼ c sugar
¼ tsp salt
Cheesecake
20 oz (2 ½ 8-oz packages) cream cheese, softened
1 c sugar
2 Tbs flour
3 large eggs
½ tsp vanilla
2 large egg yolks
¾ tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp ground allspice
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1 c pumpkin puree

Instructions

  1. For the crust: Mix all ingredients together. Press onto the sides and bottom of a 9-inch spring form pan in an even, thin layer. Set aside.
  2. For the cheesecake: Preheat oven to 350˚F.
  3. Beat together the cream cheese, sugar, and flour with an electric mixer. Add the 3 eggs, one at a time, beating between additions and scraping down the bowl. Add vanilla. In a separate bowl, beat the 2 egg yolks, spices, and pumpkin until smooth. Add about 1 ½ c of cream cheese mixture to the pumpkin mixture and stir until combined.
  4. Place springform pan in a rimmed baking pan. Pour ¾ of the pumpkin filling into the crust. Pour the plain filling over it. Drizzle the remaining pumpkin filling over the surface and swirl to make a marbled pattern. Place springform pan on a rimmed baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes. Lower oven temperature to 300˚F. Bake another 50 minutes. Do not open the oven door to check on the cheesecake while it bakes. After the hour, turn the oven off and leave the oven door cracked open for 20 minutes. Remove the cheesecake from the oven, and let cool on a wire rack. When cool, remove the sides of the pan and serve.
http://kokocooks.com/2010/11/pumpkin-swirl-cheesecake/

 

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