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Pumpkin Cake Cheesecake


Here's the thing about cheesecake. Actually, here's a few things. It cracks even if you follow all the instructions correctly, you can never really tell when it's done, it takes forever to bake and cool down to the perfect chilled temperature...but it's honestly ALWAYS worth it. Or, at least it is most of the time.
This cheesecake in particular seemed like it was destined for failure from the start because within about 5 minutes of me placing it in the oven, the glass baking dish I had placed on the rack underneath it to provide steam suddenly cracked into two. I was so caught off guard, I turned off the oven while the cheesecake was still in it and then proceeded to freak out about how I was going to handle the situation. I've done this version of a water bath many times while making cheesecake and never had any issues so yeah...total freak-out session

But I gathered myself together, got the dish out, replaced it with an aluminum pan and re-pre-heated the oven. Of course at this point, I didn't know how much longer the cheesecake needed so I sort of winged the baking time and hoped for the best. It was a really ugly cheesecake coming out of the oven; I'm talking cracks the size of Grand Canyon and it browned quite a bit.
I still really don't know how I managed to pull it off but you guys, this cheesecake turned out to be DA BOMB DOT COM. Pumpkin and cream cheese are forever meant to be together. The combination is sublime.

Here I was thinking I overbaked/underbaked the cheesecake, but it came out so rich and creamy, I couldn't believe it. My husband had thirds. His thoughts precisely were that he loved how it wasn't super duper sweet and that the topping added just the perfect amount of sweetness. I agree.

So as you can see, totally worth it.

Pumpkin Cake Cheesecake

Yield: One 9-inch cheesecake
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Ingredients:

For the cheesecake:
16 ounces cream cheese, softened to room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
3 large eggs

For the cake:
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 and 1/3 cups canned pumpkin
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/4 teaspoon salt

For the topping:
2 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup sour cream
1 and 1/4 cups powdered (confectioners) sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Spray a 9-inch springform pan with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.

For the cheesecake:
In a medium-bowl, using an electric hand mixer, beat together cream cheese and sugar until smooth and creamy. Beat in sour cream, vanilla, and flour until combined. Add eggs, one at a time, beating on low speed just until incorporated.

For the cake:
In a large bowl, whisk together oil, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and pumpkin until well-combined. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, and salt. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and whisk until no lumps remain.

Spread 1 and 1/2 cups of cake batter onto the bottom of prepared springform pan. Dollop large spoonfuls of cheesecake batter over the cake batter. Dollop the remainder of the cake batter over the cheesecake batter. It doesn't have to be precise and you don't have to swirl the two together.

Place an aluminum foil pan filled with water on the lower rack of the oven. Place cheesecake on the center rack of the oven. Bake for 65-85 minutes, or until the center of the cheesecake jiggles slightly. If the cheesecake starts to brown, place a piece of aluminum foil lightly on top of it.

Turn off the oven and allow the cheesecake to cool down for 1 hour inside with the oven door slightly ajar. Remove from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature before refrigerating overnight.

Prepare the topping by beating together butter and cream cheese with an electric hand mixer until light and fluffy. Add powdered sugar, sour cream, and vanilla and beat until well-incorporated.

Spread topping over chilled cheesecake. Garnish with chopped pecans, if desired. Refrigerate the cheesecake once more to set the topping. Slice and serve. Store cheesecake in fridge for up to 1 week.

Slightly adapted from Sally' s Baking Addiction

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