Hi. I'm Becky, and I love to eat. 

Pumpkin Cheesecake with Cornmeal Walnut Crust

Pumpkin Cheesecake with Cornmeal Walnut Crust

Pumpkin Cheesecake with Cornmeal Walnut Crust

This is a seasonal recipe that I whipped up for whatever was in the pantry. I didn't have any graham crackers for a crust, so I got creative and mixed together chopped walnuts and cornmeal. YUM! It tastes like a nutty shortbread base, with a rich pumpkin filling. I topped it off by candying walnut crumbs on top. It was a hit! Try it out this holiday season to share with friends and family.

Crust

  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, turned into meal in the food processor
  • 5 tbsp. white sugar
  • 1/2 cup of cornmeal
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup flour

Filling

  • 2 1/2 packages of cream cheese
  • 3 whole eggs, 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 cup of Greek yogurt
  • 3/4 cup pureed pumpkin
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp. maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp. natural peanut butter
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 tbsp. flour

Topping

  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 3/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp. brown sugar

Begin with preparing the crust. Pre-heat the oven to 350*. Line the bottom of a spring form pan with parchment paper, set aside. Place the walnuts into the food processor, and blend on high until a fine meal has formed. In a large mixing bowl, combine softened butter and sugar until fully creamed. Stir in all remaining ingredients, mix until fully combined. Transfer to your lined spring form pan, and press firmly with floured fingers, reaching edges of pan. Place in oven and bake for 20 minutes, until crust turns golden brown. Remove from oven, and set aside.

While crust is baking, prepare your filling. In a standing mixer, beat eggs, plus yolk, until fully combined. Add in spices, vanilla, syrup, pumpkin, yogurt, peanut butter and flour. Mix on high until fully smooth. Ensuring that your cream cheese is room temperature, add to the bowl of your mixer in large 2"x2" chunks. Mix on high until a smooth and creamy batter forms. Set aside.

Lower oven temperature to 325*. Place a large sheet of foil on the counter, and set the spring form pan with crust in the center. Fold up edges to protect the seams of the pan. Place foil wrapped pan into a shallow bath of water in an oven safe casserole dish; about half way up the spring form side. Be sure not to allow the water to go over the foil edge.

Pour the filling mixture into the center of your curst. Ensure that it spreads evenly into the pan. Place in oven and bake for 1 hour 25 minutes or until center is fully set.

While the cheesecake is baking, prepare your candied walnuts for the top. Melt butter and sugar together in medium sauce pan on the stove. Add in nuts and cinnamon, stir well. Stirring constantly, allow mixture to bubble and thicken, allowing a caramel to form in the pan.  Remove from heat and let cool. Break apart topping with a fork after fully cooled.

Remove cheesecake from oven once it's finished baking, and leave on the counter for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, run a knife around the edge of the pan to release the cheesecake. Sprinkle with candied walnut topping. Leave in the pan. Cover with plastic wrap and place in fridge for 4 hours before serving. Serve with a dollop of whipping cream, if desired.

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