One last cold weather hurray from me over here… I broke into the last of my $1 pumpkin stores from the Jean Talon market last week and remincised about the warmth of autumn. All I really wanted to do was make some pumpkin bread for husband’s new office but here we are with seeds and roasted pumpkin and this delicate cross between a pie and a cheesecake. To be honest, cheesecake is too rich for my tastes. As for pumpkin pie, my mom would always make at least fifty in early November when I was a kid when all I wanted was a nice fruit pie – maybe apple or cherry or blueberry – since the texture was too much for my small self to handle. I acquired the taste when I was on my own and started making vegan pumpkin pies with tofu but it’s still not my favourite thing in the world. This is a lovely combination of the two desserts in what I consider to be a good size (not like those gargantuan cheesecakes).
If you have pumpkin puree on hand, this is really quick and simple to throw together and it makes people really happy. As this is a mix between pie and cheesecake you can go with graham cracker crust or with pate brisee. Any size that suits your fancy; I did a couple of tarts and a whole springform pans worth with a graham cracker crust. That being said, I’m only going to include the recipe for the filling because I want you to use your imagination, what you have in your pantry and possibly Google, if this is a dessert you’d like to make.
8 oz non-dairy cream cheese, softened
1 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup fresh ginger, finely grated
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
3 flax eggs , cooled (instructions)
2 tablespoons corn starch
Using a food processor, hand or stand mixer, whip the cream cheese until it is creamy. Add the rest of your ingredients and buzz them until they are well mixed.
If using a graham cracker crust, pour filling over prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes in a 350 F oven. Be sure to use a water bath if you decide to make tarts.
If using pate brisee, pour filling over unbaked pastry and bake at the same temperature for the same amount of time.
Serve with whipped cream, ice cream or as is. Both are better the day after you’ve baked them, so try to be patient.