I couldn't wait any longer! My pumpkin desire was burning inside of me until I just couldn't take it anymore! Fall is my most favorite time of the year, hands down. New York in the fall is absolutely gorgeous. I love the leaves, the colors, the brisk cool air, anything involving a scarf and most importantly all the wonderful flavors to be incorporated in cooking/baking. I love the tastes of pumpkin and all the amazing spices that go along with the season of Fall including cinnamon, cardamon, all-spice, nutmeg, etc. Ever since August hit, I knew Fall was right around the corner and promised myself that on the first day of Fall my seasonal baking will begin. However, clearly I couldn't wait another week so I began my Fall baking last night with these bars. I got the recipe from the Martha Stewart website and boy were these good. They baked beautifully and had a wonderful consistency made up of cream cheese, pumpkin, some spices and chocolate. Although I would have preferred a stronger pumpkin taste in these bars, they were a great starting point to build on for the season! I would highly recommend making these as everyone at work thus far has loved them!
- FOR THE CRUST
- 20 chocolate wafer cookies, (half a 9-ounce package) *I used chocolate Teddy Grahams*
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- FOR THE FILLING
- 2 packages bar cream cheese, (8 ounces each)
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup canned solid-pack pumpkin puree
- 3 large eggs
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin-pie spice *I also added 1 teaspoon of Nutmeg*
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil, leaving an overhang on all sides. Set aside.
- In a food processor, blend cookies with sugar until finely ground (you should have about 1 cup crumbs); add butter, and pulse until moistened.
- Transfer crumb mixture to prepared pan, and press gently into bottom. Bake until fragrant and slightly firm, 12 to 15 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- Place cream cheese in food processor; blend until smooth. Add sugar, pumpkin puree, eggs, flour, pumpkin-pie spice, and salt; process until combined. Set aside.
- Place chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl; microwave in 30-second increments, stirring between each, until melted. Add 1 cup pumpkin mixture; stir to combine. Set aside.
- Pour remaining pumpkin mixture into prepared pan. Drop dollops of chocolate mixture onto pumpkin mixture; swirl. Bake until cheesecake is set but jiggles slightly when gently shaken, 40 to 50 minutes.
- Cool in pan. Cover; chill until firm, at least 2 hours (and up to 2 days). Using overhang, transfer cake to work surface. With a knife dipped in water, cut into 16 squares. Serve.