Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe

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I am always looking for new dessert recipes to try. I was paging through my America’s Test Kitchen when I came across this pumpkin cheesecake. I tried pumpkin cheesecake once and did not like it because it was wet and didn’t have a great flavor. Reading through the ingredients and method used to make this version really got me excited! As excited as I was to make this cheesecake I was even more excited to try it! It smelled so good coming out of the oven and it tasted great! Perfect texture and flavor. I will be making this again at Thanksgiving this year!

Ingredients

CRUST

9       Whole graham crackers, broken into rough pieces
3       tablespoons sugar
1/2   teaspoon ground ginger
1/2  teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4  teaspoon ground cloves
6      tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

FILLING

1 1/3 cups (9 1/3 ounces) sugar
1        teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2    teaspoon ground ginger
1/2    teaspoon salt
1/4    teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4    teaspoon ground cloves
1/4    teaspoon ground allspice
1 (15-ounces) can unsweetened pumpkin puree
1 1/2 pounds cream cheese, cut into 1-inch chunks and softened
1        tablespoon vanilla extract
1        tablespoon lemon juice
5        large eggs, room temperature
1        cup heavy cream
1        tablespoon unsalted butter, melted

Instructions

1. FOR THE CRUST: Adjust oven rack to lower middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Pulse crackers, sugar, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves in food processor until crackers are finely ground, about 15 pulses. Transfer crumbs to medium bowl, drizzle with melted butter, and mix with rubber spatula until evenly moistened. Transfer crumbs to 9-inch springform pan and, using bottom of ramekin or dry measuring cup, press crumbs firmly and evenly into pan bottom, keeping sides as clean as possible. Bake until crust is fragrant and browned around edges, about 15 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking. Let crust cool completely on wire rack, about 30 minutes, then wrap outside of springform pan with two 8-inch square pieces of heavy-duty aluminum foil and set in roasting pan. Bring kettle of water to boil.

2. FOR THE FILLING: While crust is cooling, whisk sugar, cinnamon, ginger, salt, nutmeg, cloves, and allspice together in small bowl; set aside. Line rimmed baking sheet with triple layer of paper towels. Spread pumpkin on paper towels on roughly even layer and press with second triple layer of paper towels to wick away moisture . Peel back top layer of paper towels and discard. Grasp bottom layer of paper towels and fold pumpkin in half; peel back paper towels. Repeat and flip pumpkin onto sheet.

3. Using stand mixer fitted with paddle, beat cream cheese on medium speed until slightly softened, about 1 minute. Scrape down bowl, then beat in sugar mixture in 3 additions on medium-low speed until combines, about 1 minute, scraping down bowl after each addition. Add vanilla, lemon juice, and pumpkin and beat on medium speed until combined, about 45 seconds; scrape down bowl. Reduce speed to medium-low and beat in eggs, one at a time, until incorporated, about 1 minute. Reduce speed to low, add cream, and beat until combined, about 45 seconds. Give filling final stir by hand.

4. Being careful not to disturb baked crust, brush inside of pan with melted butter. Pour filling into prepared pan and smooth top with rubber spatula. Set rotating pan on oven rack and pour enough boiling water into roasting pan to come halfway up sides of springform pan. Bake until center is slightly wobbly when pan is shaken and cheesecake registers 150 degrees, about 1 1/2 hours. Set roasting pan on wire rack and run thin knife around edge of springform pan to loosen cheesecake. Let cheesecake cool in roasting pan until water is just warm, about 45 minutes. Transfer springform pan to wire rack. Discard foil and continue to let cheesecake cool until barely warm, about 3 hours. Wrap pan in plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, at least 4 hours.

5. To unmold cheesecake, wrap hot, damp dish towel around springform pan and let stand for 1 minute. Remove sides of pan. Slide thin metal spatula between crust and pan bottom to loosen, then carefully slide cheesecake onto platter. Let cheesecake sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes before serving. ( Cheesecake can be refrigerated for up to 3 days)

Recipe source: America’s Test Kitchen-Special Collector’s Edition

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