Tag Archives: pumpkin

Butternut Squash (or Pumpkin) Cheesecake

Last year, I had a piece of pumpkin cheesecake for the first time, and it was delicious! It got me thinking, if butternut squash pie is so good, I bet I could make a fabulous butternut squash cheesecake! I searched and found a bunch of pumpkin cheesecake recipes, then modified them, added a ginger snap crust instead of a graham cracker crust, and added extra spice.  There was a lot of discussion about how to keep the cheesecake from cracking.  My reaction: Get over it! It will taste good if it cracks anyway, so stop stressing.  My mom’s famous, delicious cheesecake that she makes for every holiday always cracks, but she tops it with cherries, blueberries or raspberries and everyone loves it.

The only drawback that I see to this recipe is that you have to use a food processor to crush the cookies (although you could do that in a big plastic bag with a rolling pin) and puree the squash, and then use the stand mixer to make the filling.  But for something that I’ll only make once or twice a year, I guess the energy is worth it.

Butternut Squash Cheesecake with Gingersnap Crust

For the crust

  • 1 1/2 cups gingersnap cookie crumbs (use the food processor to make them)
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 4 Tbsp melted butter

Preheat the oven to 350°F.  Combine all ingredients in a bowl, then press into the bottom of a 9″ spring-form pan.  Bake 10-12 minutes.

For the filling

  • 4 packages cream cheese (8 oz.), room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 3 Tbsp flour
  • 1 cup butternut squash puree (if you want, substitute with pumpkin or any other winter squash)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature

Beat cream cheese and sugar on low speed in a stand mixer until smooth.  Blend in flour.  Add squash, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla and salt and beat until smooth.  Add eggs one at a time.  Pour into crust and smooth out the top.  Reduce heat to 300°F and bake 60 minutes.  Turn off the oven and let cool for 1 hour in the oven.  Then transfer to the refrigerator and chill at least 4 hours.  To serve, remove the sides from the pan, slice and garnish with whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon.


Filed under Food, Local Agriculture, Recipes

Spicy Sea Scallops and Pumpkin Pasta

I did not want to go to the grocery store today.  It has been raining all weekend, and carting groceries around in the rain is not my idea of a fun time.  So, I pulled open the freezer and saw the sea scallops sitting right next to a bag of pumpkin puree from my garden that I froze a month ago.  The light bulb went off!  I invented this meal, pretty much, based on what I had.

Pumpkin Pasta

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped kielbasa (skip this to make it vegetarian)
  • 1 large chopped red onion
  • 2 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • salt, pepper, crushed red pepper, nutmeg to taste
  • splash apple cider vinegar
  • 1-2 cups water (use the starchy cooking water from the pasta)
  • splash of half and half, cream, or milk
  • 12 oz. ziti, penne, or rigatoni (or any pasta, for that matter)
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs

Get a large pot of salted water on the stove to boil.  In a Dutch oven, brown the kielbasa in the olive oil, then add the onions and garlic.  Deglaze the pan with the vinegar and cook until it evaporates.  Add the pumpkin and seasonings, and bring up to a bubble.  In the mean time, cook the pasta.  Add the starchy pasta water to the sauce to thin it as desired.  Stir in the half and half/cream/milk and bring back to a bubble.  Add the pasta to the sauce, then stir in the cheese.  Top with the bread crumbs and bake at 400°F for about 20 minutes.

Spicy Sea Scallops

  • 1 lb sea callops (I buy frozen ones and thaw them by setting the plastic bag in a bowl of water for a few hours)
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • small dash nutmeg

Remove the hard muscle from the scallops if needed.  Oil a baking pan or spray with cooking spray and spread the scallops out on it so they are not touching eachother.  Combine all the spices and rub a small amount onto the top of each scallop.  You will have leftover spices, so don’t cross-contaminate!  Bake in the 400°F oven that the pasta is baking in for 10 minutes on the top shelf.


Filed under Food, Gardening, Recipes, What's for Supper?