I’m SUPER EXCITED!!! Today is the “kick-off” to my Fall Fest Week here at Norine’s Nest! We are going to have SO much fun this week! I can hardly wait to share all the goodness with you!
Some of the fun things planned? So glad you asked! I have an AWESOME spotlight post coming this week you wont’ want to miss! You are going to be blown-away by this talented lady and her fun Halloween tradition! I have little “Give Away’s” happening over on my Facebook page! If you haven’t liked our page you need to do that so you can be eligible for the freebies! (Note I said “little”…I’m still waiting for KitchenAid and Cuisinart to send me boat loads of free stuff that I can pass on to y’all! Sigh! Maybe some day…Let’s dream together!) Best of all…I’ve saved all of my very favorite “pumpkin-licious” recipes for this week! So let’s get this PARTY started!
Today I’m sharing my baby brother’s favorite pumpkin dessert that I make every year for Thanksgiving! Honestly I think we all LOVE it! (Except for hub’s and he doesn’t like any pumpkin dessert! WHAT?!! I know!!!) So, what is this amazing dessert? It’s pumpkin chocolate chip cheesecake and it’s SCRUMDELICIOUS! I originally found this recipe in a 1991 Pillsbury Classic Cookbooks. It was titled “Chocolate and Pumpkin Cheesecake. I felt bad for the mini chocolate chips not getting their “due”, so I changed the name! Other than that… I give all the credit to bakers at Pillsbury for this wonderful family tradition!
Please don’t let the word “cheesecake” scare you off! I know they seem like a difficult dessert to tackle, but they really aren’t, and with a few of the helpful tips I’m going to share, you’ll be a cheesecake wiz in no time! Even if you’ve never made one.
I’m going to start off by sharing the best tips I know of for making a successful cheesecake.
First Tip: You need a good 9 inch springform pan! Most cheesecakes are 9 inches and every baker/cook should have at least one really nice springform pan.
Second Tip: You want to cover your springform pan with alumin foil because we are going to bake this using the “water bath” method. This will prevent huge “fault line cracks” through the middle of your cheesecake. Take two sheets of foil and lay one on top of the other. Then fold a seam about 1/2 inch wide,along the length of one edge. Fold it over 3-4 times. This will create a large piece of foil, that will be leak proof, to wrap around the pan. This is really important if you don’t have one of those awesome leak proof pans.
Next open up the foil and lay flat. Place your springform pan in the center, on top of the fold. Just like in the picture below.
Wrap the foil around the outer edge of your springform pan. This will create a barrier between your pan and the water it will be sitting in so that you don’t end up with a soggy crust. Ain’t nobody got time for soggy crusts!
Okay we are ready! This is an “Oreo” bottom crust. It’s simple and amazing. Some stores carry Oreo crumbs in a box usually by the graham cracker crumbs in the baking aisle. However, if you live in the country and they don’t carry such high falutin fare, you buy a carton of Oreo’s and scrape out the white filling with a sharp knife…not with your teeth! lol It will take two rows of a regular package of Oreo’s to make this crust. (The third row is to eat while scraping the other two rows! I got ya covered! Wink-wink) Crush them, add the butter, blend well.
Place the buttered Oreo crumbs into your spring form pan. Spread the crumbs evenly over the bottom of the pan and towards the rim.
Third Tip: This recipe calls for the crust to go up the pan about one inch. For years I tried pushing the crust crumbs up the edge only to have them stick to my fingers or come crumbling down. Then one day when I had the idea to use a cup! Any type of smooth bottomed cup or jar will do. Gently push the crumbs up the edge of the pan. It works great!
That is it! We are done with the crust. Just set the pan in the refrigerator until we are ready to bake the cheesecake.
In a large bowl, beat cream cheese, pumpkin, sugar, flour, cinnamon, ginger and cloves until smooth. Add in the eggs one at a time. Continue to beat until well blended.
Stir in, by hand, Mini Chocolate Chips.
Pour into crust-lined spring form pan.
Fourth Tip: Water Bath! Note I have placed my foil covered springform pan inside another larger baking pan. This is for the water bath. I’ve also carefully poured about 1 1/2 inches of water into the pan. This will prevent those huge cracks from forming while baking. (Cheesecakes love to crack! So frustrating!)
Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 60 minutes or until edges are set. Center of cheesecake will be soft. Turn off your oven and allow the cheesecake to stand in oven with the door open at least 4 inches for 30 minutes or until center is set. Remove from oven; cool to room temperature on a wire rack.
You’ll note there is a little cracking along the edges and that’s okay. It’s the huge San Andres Fault line down the center we want to prevent. As the cake cools those cracks will almost disappear and besides…we’re going to doll this puppy up a bit with some whipped cream!
Once the cake is completely cool you can remove the sides of the pan (Gotta love those springform pans!) and refrigerate over night.
To finish this cheesecake off… I whipped up some Pastry Pride and piped it along the outer edge and sprinkled with the remaining mini chocolate chips. Pastry Pride is a non-dairy commercial product. I’ve only been able to find it at Smart & Final Stores or in specialty baking stores. Any time any friend is heading to Vegas I ask them to pick up a gallon container for me. The beauty of this product is that it holds its shape and it is really yummy! If you can’t find pastry pride…no worries. Whip up 1 cup of heavy cream in your mixer till nice and stiff. Add in one tsp of vanilla and 1/4 cup of powder sugar. It will work just as well.
Isn’t that beautiful enough to serve on Thanksgiving! I absolutely L.O.V.E. this cheesecake! The creamy pumpkin spice with the burst of semi-sweet chocolate in every bite is pure perfection! That buttery Oreo crust is the ultimate pairing for the cheesecake. I can’t even imagine using any other type of crust with this delicious cheesecake. Is your mouth watering yet? I hope so!
Tip #5: Cut your cheesecake with fishing line! Seriously! For years I’ve been cutting my cheesecakes with a long sharp knife. No matter what I did half the cheesecake came out with the knife! You can use a knife and if you do, heat it up by dipping it into a glass of hot water, or over the flame of your gas range. If you use the water method be sure to wipe off your blade. The hot knife method works, it just takes time. I always have a hoard of young men standing around drooling so I try to cut it as fast as I can.
This time I raided the hubs tackle box and used his “best” fishing line (He said at least I had good taste! lol) That fishing line sliced right through the cheesecake easy-peasy! Just be sure to cut it longer than the diameter of the cake and leave enough to wrap around your fingers on each side. Then just wiggle it down through the center and pull it through one side. Worked like a charm!
To finish mine off, I drizzle it with a little Hershey’s dark chocolate syrup. It just gives it a really elegant look and adds more wonderful chocolately goodness to every sinful bite of this decadent dessert. And why not? We are celebrating right?!!!
I hope you love this recipe as much as we do! If you love pumpkin and chocolate chip cookies and your a cheesecake fan…this is a MUST for your Holiday menu!
There you have it. Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cheesecake. The ultimate Fall Cheesecake!
I think we’re off to a good start with our Fall Fest! I hope you do too? I’ve got the printable recipe below. If you have any questions please feel free to comment below and I’ll get back to ya in a jiffy! I read everything you send to me. E-mails, comments, and all my social media. You are important to me! Thanks so much for visiting today and taking time out of your busy lives to be apart of mine!
Keep checking back this week! It’s going to be so much fun! Happy baking! Oh, before I forget…I’m sharing this recipe on the Friday Weekend Potluck Link Party! Click here to find this recipe and many other wonderful recipes…it is after all…a Potluck!