Pumpkin Cheesecake

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This recipe is from Christy Tallamy in Leesburg, VA.  It happens to be gluten free, but that does not seem to matter to the gluten-eaters in her family.

Ingredients:

  • One small pumpkin
  • One package of Midel Gluten Free Ginger Snaps
  • 1/2 cup pecans, finely chopped
  • 1 Tbs light brown sugar
  • 5 Tbs unsalted butter, melted, plus extra for greasing the pan.
  • 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp each of cloves, nutmeg, & allspice
  • 5 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 Tbs fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tsp vanilla

Method:Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Cut pumkin in half and remove seeds.   Brush with a little melted butter and place in a baking dish.  Bake for 45 minutes to one hour, or until the flesh of the pumpkin is very soft.  Remove from oven and let cool.  Scoop pumpkin from the shell and puree two cups of the pumpkin in a glass jug with an imersion blender.  Line a sieve with paper towels and leave for 2 hours to drain any excess moisture.

Set oven temperature to 500 degrees.  Butter a 9″ springform pan.  In a food processor, pulse together grahams and brown sugar.  Add pecans and pulse until texture is like coarse breadcrumbs.  Put crumb mixture in a bowl and add melted butter.  Blend well until the mixture will stick together when pressed with fingers.  Add more melted butter if necessary.  Press into the springform pan.  Bake for 5-8 minutes until brown and fragrant.  Let Cool Completely.

After removing the crusts from the oven, place a glass baking dish on the bottom rack of the oven, with at least one inch of water in the pan.  This will stay in the oven while the cheesecakes cook.  The extra moisture in the oven will help the tops to not crack.  Next, blend together the granulated sugar, salt and spices.  In a mixer, cream the cream cheese, then add the sugar mixture slowly.  Continue mixing and add the two cups of drained pumpkin.  Add the eggs to the mixer one at a time.  Add the cream, vanilla, and lemon juice.  Beat until smooth.

Pour the mixture over the cooled crust.  Bake for 12 minutes.  Reduce heat to 225 degrees and bake for 3 hours, or until the center registers 150 degrees.   Remove from oven and let cool.  Refrigerate overnight, and for up to 3 days before serving.

From Chyela Rowe

Heather Cross