Pumpkin Pralene Cheesecake

pumpkin-praline-cheesecake

Preparation Time:  15 minutes
Cooking Time:  45 minutes

Servings: 12

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 15-ounce can pumpkin
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 8-ounce carton dairy sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • Pecan halves (optional)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans

Directions

For Pecan-Praline Pieces and Powder,* line a large baking sheet with foil; set aside. In a heavy skillet place the 1/2 cup granulated sugar. Cook over medium-high heat, shaking skillet occasionally until sugar begins to melt. Do not stir. Reduce heat to low. Stir in the chopped pecans; cook about 3 minutes more or until sugar is golden brown and pecans are toasted, stirring occasionally. Pour the mixture onto the prepared baking sheet, spreading with a wooden spoon as thin as possible. Cool. Break or chop the cooled praline into 1/4-inch pieces. Set half of it aside. For Pecan-Praline Powder, place remaining broken pieces in a blender container or food processor bowl. Cover and blend or process until ground. Store in separate containers in refrigerator or freezer up to 1 week.

For crust, in a medium mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed about 30 seconds or until softened. Add the 1/4 cup brown sugar and beat until fluffy. Add the 1 cup flour. Beat on low to medium speed just until combined.

Pat dough onto bottom and 1-1/2 inches up the side of 9-inch springform pan. Bake in a 375 degree F oven about 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool crust on a wire rack while preparing filling.

For filling, in a large mixing bowl beat cream cheese, the 3/4 cup brown sugar, and the 2 tablespoons flour with an electric mixer on a medium to high speed until combined. Add the pumpkin, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Beat until combined. Add eggs all at once. Beat on low speed just until combined. Stir in the coarsely broken pecan-praline pieces, reserving the powder for the topping.

Pour filling into the crust-lined springform pan. Place the springform pan in a shallow baking pan on the oven rack. Bake in a 375 degree F. oven for 45 to 55 minutes or until center appears nearly set when shaken.

In a small bowl combine sour cream and granulated sugar. Spread over top of cheesecake.

Remove springform pan from baking pan. Cool cheesecake in springform pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Use a small metal spatula to loosen crust from sides of pan. Cool 30 minutes more. Remove side of the springform pan. Cool for 1 hour. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours.

Just before serving, sprinkle the Pecan-Praline Powder over sour cream topping in center of cheesecake and garnish with pecan halves, if desired. Makes 12 to 16 servings.

*Note: Be extremely careful when working with the hot sugar mixture for the Pecan-Praline Pieces and Powder. Total attention must be given as things move quickly when the sugar reaches the proper temperature to caramelize. Store praline powder in an airtight container until serving time. If desired, the praline powder also can be used as an ice-cream topping.

Mango Cheesecake

mango-cheescake

Preparation Time:  20 minutes
Cooking Time:  35 minutes

Servings: 8

Ingredients

  • 2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 graham cracker crust, unbaked
  • 1 1/4 cups mango nectar
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 cups ripe mangoes, peeled, pitted, and diced

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. In a medium bowl, mix 3/4 cup of sugar into the cream cheese. Mix in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Pour this batter into the graham cracker crust, and smooth over the top.
  3. Bake in preheated oven until the edges have puffed up but the middle still jiggles, about 30 minutes. Allow to cool for 30 minutes, then refrigerate until cold, about 3 hours.
  4. While the cheesecake is baking, pour 1 cup of the mango nectar and 1/3 cup of sugar into a saucepan, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, dissolving the sugar. Dissolve the cornstarch in the remaining 1/4 cup of nectar, and stir into the boiling saucepan until thickened and clear, about 30 seconds. Place diced mango into a heatproof bowl, and toss with the thickened sauce. Allow to cool to room temperature, then pour over the cheesecake. Serve cold.

Persimmon Cheesecake

persimmon-cheesecake

Preparation Time:  25 minutes
Cooking Time:  80 minutes

Servings: 12

Ingredients

  • 2 cups chopped walnuts
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter
  • 2 cups pureed persimmons
  • 3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1 1/4 cups white sugar
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).
  2. Chop the walnuts in a food processor until fine. Mix together in a bowl with the brown sugar and melted butter. Press the mixture into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven for 12 minutes. Set aside to cool completely.
  4. Combine the persimmons, cream cheese, 1 1/4 cup sugar, 3/4 cup sour cream, cinnamon, and ginger in a food processor. Blend in processor until smooth, stopping occasionally to scrape edges of food processor bowl with a spatula. Add the eggs, one at a time, and process until fully incorporated. Pour the mixture over the cooled crust.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven until mostly set with the center being slightly jiggly, 60 to 75 minutes.
  6. While the cheesecake is baking, whisk together the 1 1/4 sour cream, 3 tablespoon white sugar, and vanilla extract. Spread evenly over the cheesecake while still hot and return to oven another 10 minutes. Allow to cool completely. Loosely cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate 4 to 8 hours or overnight before serving.

White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake

white-chocolate-raspberry-cheesecake

Preparation Time:  60 minutes
Cooking Time:  60 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup chocolate cookie crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 (10 ounce) package frozen raspberries
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 cups white chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half cream
  • 3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

  1. In a medium bowl, mix together cookie crumbs, 3 tablespoons sugar, and melted butter. Press mixture into the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan.
  2. In a saucepan, combine raspberries, 2 tablespoons sugar, cornstarch, and water. Bring to boil, and continue boiling 5 minutes, or until sauce is thick. Strain sauce through a mesh strainer to remove seeds.
  3. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). In a metal bowl over a pan of simmering water, melt white chocolate chips with half-and-half, stirring occasionally until smooth.
  4. In a large bowl, mix together cream cheese and 1/2 cup sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs one at a time. Blend in vanilla and melted white chocolate. Pour half of batter over crust. Spoon 3 tablespoons raspberry sauce over batter. Pour remaining cheesecake batter into pan, and again spoon 3 tablespoons raspberry sauce over the top. Swirl batter with the tip of a knife to create a marbled effect.
  5. Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until filling is set. Cool, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 8 hours before removing from pan. Serve with remaining raspberry sauce.