These delectable bars are a wonderful alternative to traditional pumpkin pie. The creamy, slightly gingery taste of the soft, smooth cream cheese compliments leaps and bounds! These whirling wonders are a wonderful addition to your holiday tables as well as a simple, quiet tea time snack. Pure pumpkin pleasure!
Serves: 16 bars
½ cup all purpose flour
⅔ cup large flake oats
⅔ cup finely chopped toasted pecans
⅔ cup brown sugar
¼ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp salt
½ cup butter, melted
For cheesecake filling:
1 bar cream cheese (8 ounces), softened
½ cup sour cream
½ cup + 3 tbsp sugar, separated
½ tsp vanilla
1 tbsp crystallized ginger, minced
1 cup pumpkin puree (NOT filling)
1½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp nutmeg OR a total of 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
To make crust:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare a 9”x 9”x 2” square baking pan by lining with parchment paper or buttering generously.
In a large bowl, stir together first six crust ingredients. Pour melted butter over top, and stir until moistened. Press firmly and evenly into baking pan. Bake in center of oven for 20 minutes. Keep oven temperature at 350 degrees.
To make cheesecake:
In the large bowl of a standing mixer, beat together cream cheese and sour cream. Add ½ cup sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time, then vanilla. Remove 1 cup of cheesecake batter and stir in minced crystallized ginger; set aside.
To remaining batter, add pumpkin puree, remaining 3 tablespoons of sugar, and spices; beat to combine.
Drop spoonfuls of cheesecake batter onto the prepared crust, alternating between the plain and pumpkin batters. Gently swirl with a knife to create a marbled effect. Bake in center of preheated oven for approximately 30 minutes, or until set (edges will be puff a bit and center will jiggle only slightly, springing back when gently touched).
Cool on a wire rack, transfer to refrigerator. Chill at least 2 hours prior to serving.
Recipe: Jennifer Pallian