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Prep 30 mins
Cook 1 hr 30 mins
A creamy pumpkin cheesecake topped with whipped cream, pecan halves, and caramel sauce. A hint of brandy enhances the flavors of the pumpkin and spices. Using gingersnap cookie crumbs further enhances the flavor of the dessert.
- 1 3⁄4 cups graham cracker crumbs or 1 3⁄4 cups gingersnap crumbs
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1⁄2 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 1⁄4 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- 2 tablespoons brandy
- 1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin
- 4 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup brown sugar, packed
- 2⁄3 cup sugar
- 5 eggs
- 8 ounces heavy whipping cream, whipped and sweetened with 2-3 tablespoons sugar
- 16 pecan halves
- 1⁄4 cup caramel ice cream topping
- Preheat the oven to 325°F if using a silver 9-inch springform pan, or 300°F for a dark pan. Grease the pan with shortening and wrap bottom with foil to prevent leakage. Place a pan of hot water on the bottom shelf of the oven.
- Prepare the crust. In a small bowl, mix graham cracker crumbs, 2 tablespoons of sugar and the melted butter. Press the crumb mixture in the bottom of the pan. Bake the crust for 10 minutes. Cool completely at room temperature.
- Prepare the filling. In a small bowl, mix flour, pumpkin pie spice, brandy and pumpkin; then set aside. In a large bowl, beat the softened cream cheese with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth and creamy. Gradually beat in the brown sugar and 2/3 cup of white sugar until smooth.
- Gradually beat in pumpkin mixture until smooth. On low speed, beat in 1 egg at a time just until blended.
- Pour filling into pan and bake 1 hour 20 minutes to 1 hour 30 minutes. The cake is done when a small circle about 3 inches wide in the middle of the cheesecake wiggles when the pan is tapped with a wooden spoon.
- Turn oven completely off and allow the cheesecake to cool gradually for 1 hour. Remove the cake from the oven, and using a knife, move between the cheesecake and the pan sides to loosen the cheesecake. Allow to cool at room temperature on a rack for an additional 30 minutes. Refrigerate 6 hours or overnight before serving.
- To serve, again move along the inside of the pan sides with a knife, and then carefully remove the side. Top with whipped cream, pecan halves, and drizzle with caramel sauce. Cut into 16 slices. Store covered in refrigerator.
This creation is pure decadence. So creamy and rich that you really can't eat more than one slice (1/16th) at a time. I just followed the directions and it came out as perfect as anything you could buy with no center sinking and a clean removal from the pan. I used Rum-Glazed Spiced Pecans for the pecans and with those and the caramel sauce there was sure no whipped cream needed. In fact I do think that whipped cream would detract from the wonderful spice, pumpkin, caramel and nuts which were a completely perfect experience at that point. Made for PAC, Fall 2012.