Monday, December 31, 2007

Pumpkin Cheesecake? Oh, yeah.

Sarah and I share a love of good cheesecake. I think it's hereditary. Anyway, the year she turned 10 she made her first "real" cheesecake (not from a mix) for her birthday, and with that a tradition was born. Every year we experiment with tastes and styles to find that perfect blend. Well, this year, I think we outdid ourselves. Unfortunately, I can't take very much (if any) credit for it. I just Googled.

We brought a couple of cans of pumpkin down from the States when we came home. With them we made a couple of the traditional pumpkin pies (which were very much a hit here, I must say!), but another friend brought a couple more cans when she came home from furlough, so I was blessed with pumpkin. About a week before her actual birthday Sarah said, "Mom, do you think we could make a pumpkin cheesecake?" Hm. Yeah, I thought we could. Rather than just take an existing recipe and tweaking it, I thought I should Google "pumpkin cheesecake" and see what was out there already.

Here's what I found.
The Marbled Pumpkin Cheesecake.
Lovely and tasty!!!

I think we've found a new holiday tradition.

It turned out so well the first time, I'm actually making another one while I type. Smells yummy. Of course, as with most things I bake here in Mexico, I had to adjust the recipe to items available and affordable.

Here's the recipe as I made it:

Sarah's Swirled Pumpkin Cheesecake

2 cups white flour
4 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp powdered ginger
1/4 tsp powdered cloves
1/4 tsp powdered nutmeg
mix well in 9" deep dish pie pan

combine 2/3 cup vegetable oil and 3 Tbsp milk -- whip together with fork and pour over dry ingredients in pie plate. Mix well and form into a pretty crust pressing into place across bottom and up sides. Bake at 400 degrees 10 minutes. Let cool.

I've used variations of this basic crust -- without spices -- for years in pot pies and fruit pies alike. I hate rolling out pie crusts. The original recipe called for crushed gingersnap cookies. I have no idea what gingersnaps are called in Spanish or if I could even find them if I knew. This crust turned out perfect!

2 packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
4 eggs
1 cup pumpkin pie filling

Beat together cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until creamy. Add 3 eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Set aside 1 cup of mixture for swirling. Add one cup pumpkin and the last egg to the mixing bowl and beat well. Preheat oven to 350 and place pie pan on large cookie sheet (unless you like cleaning cheesecake drips off the bottom of the oven.) Carefully pour the pumpkin mixture into the pie crust. Now, for the fun part: swirling. The recipe said to blop the white cheesecake mixture into 6 blops and then run a knife around the pie gently to swirl. I didn't do it like that. Starting at the outside edge, pour a pinwheel shape, very slowly, around the edge and toward the center. With that done, take a toothpick and starting at the center gently and slowly pull to the outside edge (visualize with me here) at 12 o'clock, 3 o'clock, 6 o'clock and 9 o'clock. Stick the toothpick in your mouth, grab another toothpick and starting at the outside edge, pull gently to the center at 1:30, 4:30, 7:30 and 10:30. Viola! Marbled. Stick the other toothpick in your mouth.

Now, open the oven door and CAREFULLY slide the cookie sheet into the moderately hot oven and bake about 55 minutes (or until the center tests done). I hate to cut the center to test it, so what you want is poofed on the edges and fairly flat in the center, not jiggly at the center (under done) and not cracking around the edge (over done).

I don't intend to share many recipes here, but when something tastes this good, it's a shame to not share! Disfrutalo!!!! (enjoy!)


Candice said...

Beautiful cheese cake! I'm very impressed, I've never made one I have to say. Never been a request for one from my husband even though he likes it. Maybe one day I'll try your recipe:)

Rebecca said...

Thanks for the compliment!!! :) If he likes cheesecake and he likes pumpkin pie, he'll love it. I thought it would be too difficult, but it was as easy as pie (bad pun, I know.).