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Pumpkin Nutty Cheesecake

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Holy pumpkins Batman! It’s time for cheesecake. . .

Cooler weather not only brings out my sweatpants but my desire to bake. Now I tell myself I don’t need these sweets but the urge to splurge (in moderation of course) generally wins over during the holiday season. Justification: it’s homemade.

Ingredients

Crust
1, 7 oz package Pamela’s gluten free gingersnaps
1/4 cup brown sugar
6 tablespoons grass fed raw butter, melted

Filling
3, 8 oz packages organic cream cheese, softened
1 cup organic cane sugar
1/2 cup organic brown sugar
4 large eggs
2 cups fresh pumpkin
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 cup raw gf cream

Nut Topping
1 cup coarsely chopped pecans
1 cup organic brown sugar
4 tablespoons butter, melted

Garnishes
Orange slices and whipped cream

Preparation

Crust
Process gingersnaps in a food processor until fine crumbs.  Mix with melted butter and brown sugar.  Press firmly and evenly over bottom and up the sides of a lightly buttered 9-inch springform pan.  Chill.

Filling
Beat cream cheese until smooth.  Gradually add sugars beating until mixed.  Add eggs, one at a time beating until just blended.  Add pumpkin, spices and 1/4 cup heavy cream.  Pour into prepared pan.  Bake at 325 for 1 hour and 40 minutes.

Prepare Topping
Combine melted butter, sugar and nuts.  Remove cake from oven and sprinkle with topping; bake an additional 10 minutes.  Cool cheesecake; refrigerate several hour or overnight.

Garnish
Take the remaining 3/4 cup of raw cream and place in a small stainless steel mixing bowl.  Beat until slightly thickened; add 2 tablespoons powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla.  Continue beating until stiff peaks form.  With a pastry bag pipe around the cheesecake (one mound per serving size) and top each with an orange slice.

Servings:  16 “moderate” slices or 8 large ones