Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Feast of kings

The highlight of thanksgiving for us. Make it. Trust us. It will be the best tasting cheesecake you've ever had.

Pumpkin cheesecake with marshmallow-sour cream topping and gingersnap crust:

For crust:

Nonstick vegetable oil spray

2 cups gingersnap cookie crumbs (about 9 ounces)

1 cup pecans (about 3 1/2 ounces)

1/4 cup (packed) golden brown sugar

2 tablespoons chopped crystallized ginger

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted

For filling:

4 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature

2 cups sugar

1 15-ounce can pure pumpkin

5 large eggs

3 tablespoons all purpose flour

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons vanilla extract

For topping:

2 cups mini marshmallows or large marshmallows cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1/4 cup whole milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 cup sour cream


Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray 9-inch-diameter springform pan with 2 3/4-inch-high sides with nonstick spray. Grind cookie crumbs, pecans, brown sugar, and ginger in processor until nuts are finely ground. Add butter; using on/off turns, process to blend. Transfer mixture to prepared pan; press onto bottom and 2 inches up sides of pan. Bake crust until set and lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Cool completely.


Preheat oven to 350°F. Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar in large bowl until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in pumpkin. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating on low speed to incorporate each addition. Add flour, spices, and salt; beat just to blend. Beat in vanilla. Transfer filling to cooled crust. Bake until filling is just set in center and edges begin to crack (filling will move slightly when pan is gently shaken), about 1 hour 20 minutes. Cool 1 hour. Run knife around sides of pan to release crust. Chill cheesecake uncovered in pan overnight.


Stir marshmallows and milk in medium saucepan over low heat until marshmallows are melted. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and salt. Cool marshmallow mixture to room temperature, stirring occasionally.

Add sour cream to marshmallow mixture; fold gently just to blend. Pour topping over cheesecake and spread evenly, leaving 1/2 inch uncovered around edges. Chill to set topping, at least 1 hour. DO AHEAD: Cheesecake can be made 1 day ahead. Keep chilled.

Read more: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Pumpkin-Cheesecake-with-Marshmallow-Sour-Cream-Topping-and-Gingersnap-Crust-350478#ixzz16o9P8AVC

Here's the delicious cheesecake before:

And if you don't have a springform pan and choose to use a pie pan, this is how much filling you will have leftover. (It's OK, right now we have a throw-together graham cracker crust, cheesecake with candied leftover pecans [which went in the original gingersnap crust] bars in the refrigerator, cooked in a brownie pan. WORTH IT.)

And....after! This stuff went quickly. An amazingly light way to end a heavy dinner (well, light in feeling, not calories, haha).

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Coos Bay is (was) a snowglobe

So the Oregon Coast got snow. It was about an inch, but it was awfully pretty. Everyone was freaking out. People at work were saying things like, "glad I don't have to leave for awhile," and "I'm glad I'm not going to lunch, I can't drive in this," and running to the window saying "wow, it's really coming down out there!"

And it was, actually. But it certainly wasn't sticking. It hasn't been cold enough to freeze the ground, making it impossible for the roads to become treacherous. But residents were a little too excited to think there's no way the snow stays around, and yes, Coos Bay schools canceled classes Wednesday early on Tuesday afternoon.

I can play in it? Mommy?

No, maybe we'll just cuddle on the blanket. It is cold after all, and the humans won't turn the heat on.

Ozzy, you've got a little somethin'...

Always cold and wet and sniffing hands awkwardly.

OK, seriously, why is he laying on me? Can you move him?

Actually, he's pretty warm. Maybe I'll just lay here awhile...

As I'm writing this, there's basically no snow left. And yes, Coos Bay gets off school tomorrow. Lucky jerks. It is going to be "cold," i.e. going down to like, 23 degrees, so they said it was because it would be cold and "icy." Geez.

Probably the last snow I'll see until we end up moving! And remember, this storm that stretched all the way up to Washington is probably heading easterly, so heads up Midwest.