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Heavenly Pumpkin Cheesecake

Notes:

Ingredients: For best results, leave all your ingredients on the counter for at least a couple of hours at room temperature

Crust: For this recipe, you can make the graham cracker crust (recipe below) or a regular pie crust.  Buying frozen pie crust at the store can save you some time and they come out equally delicious.

3 cup graham cracker crumbs
3 tsp ground ginger
3 tbs honey
1 stick of butter

Optional:

Graham cracker crust: add 3 tbs wheat germ and 2 tbs ground flaxseed to increase vitamin E and omega-3 content

Process the graham cracker, ginger, honey and melted butter in a food processor
Place it in 3 pie tins, bake it for 8 minutes and set aside

Spice Mix Blend:  Using the spice mix blend is more inexpensive because you don’t have to buy several different spices for one recipe, it is more convenient to store and has many different applications as you will see in my other posts.  However, you can use the individual spices if you rather do so or already have them on hand.

1 tbs ground ginger
1 tbs allspice
1 tbs nutmeg
1 tbs cinnamon

Cinnamon: I use Saigon cinnamon (cinnamomum loureiroi) which is indigenous to mainland Southeast Asia).  According to wikepedia, ‘Saigon cinnamon has 1-5% essential oil in content and 25% cinnamaldehyde in essential oil, which is the highest of all the cinnamon species’.   Consequently, it has the most intense flavor with very complex aroma.

Sweetener: This recipe is on the low end of sweetener added.  You can adjust the amount added to taste.  We always use honey (GI: 30) or agave syrup (GI: 15) when possible because they have a much lower glycemic index than sugar (GI: 64).  The glycemic index ranks carbohydrates according to how they affect your body after consumption.  Foods with a high index causes a spike in blood sugar levels.  These have been know to increase the risk of cancer , type 2 diabetes, acne, Alzheimer and weight gain.

You can google ‘glycemic index’ for more information on this subject and a list of foods and related GI’s.


For this recipe you will need the following:

2 Frozen pie or graham cracker pie crusts (recipe above)
2 8oz packages of light cream cheese (70 cal/4.5g of fat as opposed to 90 cal/9g of fat in regular cream cheese)
1 1/2 tbs pumpkin pie spice blend
1 1/2 tbs Saigon cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp allspice
4 eggs
1 tbs vanilla extract
2 tbs molasses
1/3 cup honey or agave nectar
1 29 oz can pumpkin
2 12 oz cans of evaporated milk

Preheat oven at 350 degrees.  In a separate bowl combine 1 1/2 tsp allspice, 1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice blend, 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon and pumpkin.  Mix well and set aside.

Place 2 8oz packages of light cream cheese in the mixer bowl and mix it at medium low setting until creamy.

Scrape the bottom of the bowl so the cream cheese is completely mixed.  Otherwise, you will have lumps in your pie.

Add 1 tbs vanilla extract, 1/3 cup honey (or agave nectar), 2 tbs molasses and mix well.

Gradually add one egg at a time until they are all fully incorporated (4 eggs total).


Gradually add the pumpkin/spice mix until it is all incorporated.


Turn the mixer to low speed, add evaporated milk (2 cans) and mix well.  Optional: If you see any lumps, you can run the mix through a fine sieve to make sure it is smooth and creamy.

Place your 2 pie shells in a baking pan lined with aluminum foil and pour in the pumpkin cheesecake mix.

Pour additional pumpkin cheesecake mix into a baking dish.  It might be enough for a third pie if you have an additional pie crust on hand.

Bake it in the oven at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

After the 20 minutes lower the temperature to 325 degrees and bake it for another 40 minutes.


Once the pies are done baking, leave them in the oven for about a couple of hours with the door half open until they are completely cooled.  This allows the pies to slowly cool, reducing the likelihood of cracking (not a guarantee though…).

Finally, cover the pies with aluminum foil and place them in the refrigerator overnight to set.

Sadly, at our house only one of the pies will get this special treatment as we can hardly wait until it’s completely cooled before eating it.  You will not be disappointed!


1 Comments Add Yours ↓

  1. trigeek #
    1

    This pie is great! You can adjust the sweetness to your preference and the texture is perfect. It is best after being in the ‘frige and cool but it is really hard to keep from eating all of it before it cools.



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