I had you at the title right?
I’ve made this for a few Thanksgivings now, and this cheesecake is so worth the effort. I think it is nice to offer an alternative to the Perfect Pumpkin Pie, and this is one of my back up desserts. The sauce isn’t totally necessary, but it is so good that you need to make it!
As you can see from the photo, my cheesecake cracked a bit, so I “glazed” with a little sour cream mixture (4 ounces sour cream mixed with 1 teaspoon sugar) after it had cooled. This only makes it a little prettier, but isn’t necessary – your guests will forgive a little cracked top with the first bite…
Pumpkin Rum Cheesecake with Praline Sauce
For the crust:
1 1/4 cups honey graham cracker crumbs (one inner pack)
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
Butter, to butter the pan
For the filling:
3/4 cup plus 6 Tbsp. sugar, divided use
1 cup canned pumpkin
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. salt
3 (8 oz.) packages cream cheese, softened
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
2 Tbsp. heavy cream
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 Tbsp. rum (I use dark rum)
For the praline sauce:
1 cup light brown sugar
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
1 1/2 cups water
2 Tbsp. butter
1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans
To make the crust:
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2. Crush graham crackers and chop nuts separately in food processor or blender.
3. Combine crust ingredients and mix well. Pat into bottom of 9 inch buttered springform pan.
4. Bake for 15 minutes. Set aside until filling is prepared.
To make the filling:
1. Lower the oven temperature to 300 degrees.
2. Mix the 3/4 cup sugar, pumpkin, eggs, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt in a bowl. Set aside.
3. Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and 6 tablespoons of sugar until smooth. Beating well after each addition, add cornstarch, heavy cream, vanilla, and rum. Add pumpkin mixture to cream cheese mixture. Mix thoroughly so color is consistent.
4. Pour filling into crust and bake one hour at 300 degrees. The center will be soft.
5. Turn oven off and let cheesecake cool in oven with the door closed for several hours or overnight. (I leave mine in the oven overnight…) Refrigerate until ready to serve.
To make the sauce:
1. Combine sugar and cornstarch in a saucepan.
2. Add water and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thick and bubbly – about five minutes. If you prefer thicker sauce, add additional cornstarch mixed with an equal amount of cold water.
3. Add butter and pecans. Cool slightly before serving.
Serve with the praline sauce drizzled over the cheesecake slices.
Source: Adapted from “Good Friends, Great Tastes” by Debbie Meyer