Sunday, September 23, 2012

Pumpkin Cheesecake with a Gingerbread Crust

This has to be one of my absolute favorite recipes for fall. I have been making it for years but it seems that whenever the autumn season hits I can not pump out enough of these cheesecakes for my friends and family. Your loved ones will rave over this fabulous recipe. Garnish it with some freshly whipped cream and a sprinkling of cookie crumbs and I assure you it will be a major success... Enjoy! 

Ingredients for the crust:
12 oz. Gingerbread men 
1 cup pecans
1 stick butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350

Lightly spray a 12 inch springform pan with cooking spray and set aside.

 Place the gingerbread men and the pecans in a food processor and grind until they form coarse crumbs.  

Place in a bowl and slowly add the butter while mixing with your hands ( As soon as you can pack the mixture without it falling apart, it is ready )

Press the mixture into the bottom of the pan.  

Bake for 15 minutes then  place in the refrigerator until cool.

Ingredients for the filling:
2 lbs cream cheese ( softened )
1 cup light brown sugar
6 eggs (Farm fresh is best!)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup flour (All purpose, I prefer unbleached, sifted ) 
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp allspice
pinch salt
1 tsp vanilla (the real stuff!)
2 cups pumpkin puree

Place the cream cheese in a kitchen aide using the paddle and blend until smooth.

 Add the sugar and blend until smooth; scrape down sides of bowl.  

one at a time, add the eggs making sure they are thoroughly blended before adding another then slowly pour in the heavy cream, flour, cinnamon, five spice and salt one at a time blending after each ingredient.

  Add the vanilla and pumpkin then blend completely, scraping down the sides and making sure there are no lumps.  

Spray the pan, with the pre-baked crust, again with cooking spray.  

Pour the mixture (it will be pretty liquid) into the pan and place in the middle of the preheated oven.  Bake for about 1 hour 20 minutes, checking frequently after 1 hour.

 The cake is finished when it is browning around the edges and top, and is mostly set; the center might still be slightly wobbly. 

 Remove from the oven and carefully cut around the edges of the cake with a very sharp knife ( this will prevent the cake from cracking as it cools )  

Allow to cool completely ( roughly 6 hours or overnight )

Garnish with some whipped cream and serve along side a nice cup of hot cocoa and a good book. Enjoy everyone and happy Autumnal equinox everyone! 

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Crock Pot Style Apple Butter

Soon it will be time for brightly colored pumpkins, fuzzy scarfs, crunchy leaves, and the aroma of sweet apples filling the crisp autumn air. What better way to start off the autumn season then breaking out the crock pot and filling your home with the supple & sensuous smell of apples and cinnamon. The aromatic effects of this recipe are reason enough to make it but it's not the only reason you should. This recipe offers a wonderful opportunity to create a memory with your loved ones. Spend some bonding time with the family or significant other picking, peeling, and preparing apples when you bring love into the kitchen wonderful memories will always be had... Enjoy! 

5-10lbs Apples ( about a grocery bag full, peeled and diced ) 
1 quart water
1/3 cup White Sugar 
2 1/2 tbsp. Brown Sugar
1/4 tsp. Salt 
1/4 tsp. Allspice
2 tbsp. Cinnamon
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract 

Place all ingredient in a crock pot, stir well so that everything is evenly distributed. 

Cook on low for 10 hours, stirring occasionally.

using an emulsion blender, puree apples. 

If you choose to can it, do it at this time. If not serve up the warm apple butter in a bowl, sprinkle with granola and a scoop of icecream for a fun take on apple pie sundaes! Enjoy! 

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Our first contest!

Who can resist an oatmeal raisin cookie? Add some chocolate and they are virtually irresistable! The creaminess of the white chocolate pairs with the fruity component of the raisins and the earthiness of the oatmeal. These cookies are just fabulous and something everyone can enjoy! The only thing that would make this recipe more awesome is a fun name to go along with it! And that is where you come in my friends! BadToTheScone is hosting our very first contest! Submit your entries for a fun and unique name for these cookies in the comment section and the winner will receive a fabulous little homemade gift made by me ( and who doesn't love free stuff! )... Enjoy! 

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp cinnamon (or more as desired)
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup oil (Canola Oil)
1 tbsp molasses
1 egg (beat with 1 Tbsp Water)
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup white chocolate chips


Preheat oven to 375

In a large mixing bowl combine honey, oil, vanilla, egg, and molasses. 

In a seperate bowl combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and oats. Mix well. 

Slowly incorporate the dry ingredients into the wet. once mixed fold in the raisins and white chocolate. Roll dough into 1 inch balls and lay on a baking sheet. 

Bake at 375 for 10-15 minutes. 

Best served with a tall glass of milk and a nice book... Enjoy!