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Hi, I’m Lauren!

Welcome to my blog. I document my adventures in travel, entertaining, and food. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Cheesecake with Gingersnap Crust

Pumpkin Cheesecake with Gingersnap Crust

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One of my most vivid memories from my childhood is from a beach bbq my mom hosted when I was around eight years old. I had a desire to be in the kitchen and loved box cake mixes. For this particular party, I convinced my mom to let me buy a devil’s food cake mix, luscious chocolate glaze and little chocolate figures to decorate the sides of the cake. I already knew I was opting to use a Bundt cake pan and was super excited to see it all come together. It probably took me all of an hour to make the cake, which I left on the kitchen counter until it was time for dessert later in the day. Turns out, I was not the only one excited to try this cake… my dog, Darcy (a steel stomached Rottweiler), decided to take the opportunity while the coast was clear to devour half of my chocolate masterpiece. When my mom and I discovered the cholate mess, my mom cool and collectively carved away the destroyed cake and made the untouched half look presentable. {Sidenote: yes, Darcy ate waaaay too much chocolate, but miracle of miracles, she was fine!}

Flash forward to the present, we held our Thanksgiving dinner at my grandmother’s home this year. My responsibilities included mashed potatoes and a couple desserts. I opted to make a delicious pumpkin cheesecake with gingersnap crust and a chocolate mousse with phyllo crust. Since my mother’s birthday falls right around Turkey Day, I turned the pumpkin cheesecake into her very own birthday cake. I plated the cake on a silver cake stand, placed the cake safely in the middle of the table and went to round everyone up for the birthday song. As I turned the corner to head back to where I left the cake, I saw a large golden retriever, my grandmother’s unruly puppy, perfectly balanced on a chair and the table, munching away at my gorgeous cheesecake. Cue flashbacks of my childhood, including my mother fixing her own birthday treat. Luckily this cake was a little more dog friendly and we had a whole second dessert to enjoy.

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12 ounces gingersnaps (about 50), broken into small pieces
6  tablespoons sugar
8  tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup canned pumpkin puree
1 large whole egg, plus 1 large egg yolk
1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
Pinch of ground cloves

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pulse gingersnaps and sugar in a food processor until fine crumbs form. Add butter and pulse to combine. Press mixture evenly into bottom and up sides of a 9-inch pie dish. Freeze until firm, about 30 minutes.

Bake crust until golden in spots, about 15 minutes. With the bottom of a measuring cup, gently flatten bottom and sides of crust. Let cool completely on a wire rack. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees.

Pulse cream cheese in food processor until smooth. Add sugar and pumpkin and process until smooth, occasionally scraping down sides of bowl. Add egg and yolk, flour, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves; process until incorporated.

Pour filling into cooled shell and bake until custard is just set, about 33 minutes. Let cool completely on a wire rack, then refrigerate until cold and firm, at least 4 hours and up to overnight.

Recipe from Martha Stewart.

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