Rum and gingersnaps add pizzazz to this comforting autumn classic.
With its rum-scented creamy filling and a spiced undercarriage of gingersnap crumbs, this pumpkin cheesecake recipe from Bernard L. Herman’s 2012 story “A Bountiful Shore” is a welcome revamp of the traditional dessert. Diehard bakers: feel free to zhuzh things up with from-scratch gingersnaps and pumpkin purée; for the rest of us mere mortals, there’s always excellent-quality canned pumpkin (such as Libby’s) and gingersnaps (such as the family-owned Susan Snaps).
Featured in: “A Bountiful Shore.”
- 13 oz. gingersnap cookies
- 1⁄2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts (2⅔ oz.)
- 1⁄2 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 8 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- 1 3⁄4 lb. cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 3⁄4 cup canned pumpkin
- 3 tbsp. dark rum
- 1 1⁄2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1⁄2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1⁄4 tsp. ground cloves
- 1⁄4 tsp. ground ginger
- 1⁄4 tsp. ground mace
- 2 large eggs
- Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350°F. To the work bowl of a food processor, add the gingersnaps, walnuts, and confectioners’ sugar, and process until finely ground. Add the butter and pulse until incorporated. Transfer to a 9-inch springform pan set on a rimmed baking sheet. Using a glass, press the crumbs into an even layer on the bottom and halfway up the sides of the pan; set aside. Clean and dry the work bowl and return it to the base.
- To the empty work bowl, add the cream cheese, sugar, pumpkin, rum, cinnamon, vanilla, salt, cloves, ginger, mace, and eggs, then process until smooth, scraping down the bowl with a rubber spatula halfway through blending. Scrape the filling into the crust and bake until browned on top and the middle jiggles slightly when the pan is tapped, about 1½ hours. Let cool to room temperature, then chill until set, at least 4 hours.