Saturday, October 1, 2016

Mealtime Magic: Recipes from Pumpkin it Up!

There's a fun cookbook out for pumpkin lovers - great for fall but with recipes for any time of year! Pumpkin is a versatile ingredient that works in a lot of different foods, and in Pumpkin it Up!, which I got to review, I found a lot of surprising ways to use it! It was a great cookbook to read, and I have a chance to share some of the recipes with you here.

Pumpkin Crunch Cheesecake
Makes 10 servings
1 3 ⁄ 4 cups crushed shortbread cookies
1 tablespoon butter or margarine, melted
3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 1 ⁄ 4 cups firmly packed dark brown sugar
1 (15-ounce) can or 1 7 ⁄ 8 cups cooked pumpkin purée
1 (5-ounce) can evaporated milk
2 eggs
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 ⁄ 2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 ⁄ 4 teaspoon ginger
1 (8-ounce) container sour cream, room temperature
2 tablespoons sugar
1 ⁄ 2 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup toffee bits
1 ⁄ 3 cup caramel topping

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, combine the cookie crumbs and butter. Press the crumbs into the bottom and 1 inch up the side of a 9-inch springform pan. Bake for 7 minutes; do not allow to brown. Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and brown sugar until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the pumpkin, milk, eggs, cornstarch, cinnamon, and ginger; beat we ll. Pour the mixture into the cooled crust. Bake until edge is set but center still moves slightly, about 1 hour. Remove from oven. Do not turn off oven. In a small bowl, combine the sour cream, sugar, and vanilla; mi x well. Spread the mixture over warm cheesecake and sprinkle with the toffee bits. Bake for 8 minutes. Cool in the pan on a wire rack to room temperature. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours, or until filling is firm. Remove springform pan side, and drizzle cheesecake with the caramel topping just before serving.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes about 50 cookies
1 cup butter or margarine, softened
3 ⁄ 4 cup sugar
3 ⁄ 4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1 cup quick-cooking oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup canned or cooked pumpkin purée
1 1 ⁄ 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare 2 baking sheets with nonstick cooking spray and set aside. In a large bowl, combine the butter, sugar, and brown sugar; beat until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until smooth. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, oats, baking soda, and cinnamon. Stir the flour mixture gradually into the butter mixture, alternating with the pumpkin purée, beating well after each addition. Fold in the chocolate chips. Drop the dough by tablespoonfuls, about 2 inches apart, onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake for 12 – 13 minutes, until edges are just browned. Remove from oven and transfer cookies to wire racks to cool.

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