Source: Adapted from Martha Stewart
So, are you in the mood for an excellent cheesecake? This is a recipe I adapted from Martha Stewart years ago. It's always a staple at my Fall Chili gathering, and at Thanksgiving. It's unique due to the pumpkin that is added, as well, it has no sour cream topping. I like to add candied walnuts to the topping, just to pull it all together. I do hope you enjoy this little beauty!
For the Crust:
- 1 1/4 cup petit burre or grahm crackers
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 4 TBS butter melted
For the Filling:
- 4 packages Cream Cheese very soft
- 1 1/4 cup sugar
- 3 TBS flour
- 1 small pumpkin soft, baked pulp only.
- 2 TBS pumpkin pie spice less if it's not your favorite
- 1-2 tsp cinnamon personal addition, not original
- 1 TBS vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 4 large eggs
For Candied Walnuts as a Topper:
- 4 cups Walnuts
- 2 egg whites lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup sugar
Take your crackers and crush until they are a fine flour.
Follow the crust recipe, add the sugar, and pour in the melted butter
Line in your spring form pan (be sure the pan is slightly greased) and put in the heated (350) oven for 10 minutes or until golden around the edges
note: I used a small metal measuring cup to press the crust evenly down, all along the circular edges.
Take out when golden. Set aside and begin to make your filling
With an electric mixer beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. mix in flour. Add pumpkin puree, spice vanilla and salt. Mix until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing in between. Pour filling in spring form pan w/ the pre-baked crust. Smooth top, and cook for 45 minutes in a 300 Degree oven. Take out of oven after 2 hours standing. Cool completely. Line w/ plastic wrap and chill for up to 4 hours before serving.
Note: They strongly suggest to turn off oven after 45 minutes, keep cake in, and do not open for 2 hours. This is to prevent cracking on the top. However, the tip does not work. You can always try for yourself, but I've had no solid results with this. Hence, the candied walnut topping.
for the walnuts: beat the egg whites and combine with the walnuts. Add the sugar, stir well. Bake on paper lined cookie sheet @ 350 F. Bake about 10-12 minutes. Take out, and let cool completely. Top before you serve the cake, after it's chilled for a minimum of 4 hours.
Let cool completely, and break apart.
Toss on top of the cheese cake just before serving, as to keep the walnuts nice and crunchy.
As I mentioned, the tip to keep it in the oven for 2 hours, didn't work. I decided to top it with candied walnuts, and it served as a great impromptu idea.