pumpkin cheesecake (and an apology)

*I apologize for not posting a hair accessory tutorial yesterday... being 35 weeks pregnant got the best of me... but I'm working on one right now that will be posted later today!*

I love pumpkin.  anything.  No really, anything.  If it has pumpkin in it, I'm going to love it, period.  I also love a good cheesecake.... so a few years ago I added pumpkin to my cheesecake recipe, and it was delicious.  So much so that I make it every year for thanksgiving, and I'm often asked for the recipe.  So, this is my gift to you... pumpkin cheesecake.  Make it.  You'll love it, I promise!

pumpkin cheesecake
1 c. canned pumpkin
3 8oz packages of cream cheese (softened)
2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 c. finely crushed graham crackers (cinnamon flavored works well)
1/3 c. sugar
3 eggs
1/3 c. melted butter
2/3 c. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Mix graham crackers, sugar, and melted butter in med. bowl.  Press into 8-9 in round pan, covering bottom and sides.  ( I think you're suppossed to use a springform pan to make cheesecake, but I've always used a regular pan and it turns out fine.)  Bake for 7-8 mins.

While crust is baking, beat cream cheese (med- high) in LARGE bowl until smooth.  Add pumpkin, brown sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon.  Beat (med) until mixed well.  In a small bowl, wisk eggs together.  Fold into cream cheese mixture, a little at a time.

Pour filling into crust.  Place cheesecake pan into a baking pan, and fill baking pan with water until halfway up cheesecake pan.  (makes a difference, I promise!)  Place in oven and bake abt an hour or until center is slightly jiggly. :)
The water makes the pan really heavy and sloshy (especially after baking) , so be prepared.

Remove from water bath and cool on wire rack at least 1 hour.... I usually do 1 & 1/2 hours.  Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours or until center is firm.

I used to make a pumpkin glaze to drizzle over it, but smuckers sells a pumpkin syrup ice cream topping thing that is frankly just as good when heated, so I usually use that now instead... but cheesecake is totally yummy eaten plain, too.

... now go grab a cup of coffee and enjoy!

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