Somehow I got in my head I wanted Pumpkin Cheesecake this year for Thanksgiving dessert. I knew I wanted a gingersnap crust and a little shot of something to deepen the flavor. Having recently stocked the liquor cabinet for the holidays, it came to me. I would use rum as my flavoring. Zaya Rum to be exact. Zaya is an amber rum from Trinidad and Tobago, a friend introduced us to awhile back. With heady notes of caramel and vanilla, it is Rummy Yummy! It makes an amazing eggnog, but is actually wonderful all on its own! My cheesecake recipe is inspired by the Bourbon Pumpkin Cheesecake in Gourmet Magazine, November 2003. My changes are the liquor and the gingersnaps.
For the Crust
1 9″ Springform pan, buttered
4 1/2 ounces gingersnaps (about 1 cup when ground)
1/2 cup pecans
1/4 cup packed brown sugar 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) melted butter
Combine all the dry ingredients in a food processor. Process until finely ground.
Add the melted butter and pulse a couple more times to blend. Pat the mixture into the pan. Refrigerate while you prepare the filling.
For the Filling
Pre heat oven to 350′
1 15oz can organic pumpkin puree
2 large eggs
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 Tablespoons sour cream
1/4 cup Zaya Rum
1 1/2 teaspoons of cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon Salt
3 8 ounce packages of Cream Cheese
Place the cream cheese in the bowl of a stand mixer, and whip until soft. In another bowl, combine the pumpkin, eggs, brown sugar, sour cream, rum, spices and salt. Mix well. Add this mixture to the cream cheese and blend until smooth and completely mixed.
Pour the filling into the crust, smoothing the top with a spatula. Bake until the center is set – about 60-75 minutes.
For the Sour Cream Topping
1 1/2 cups of sour cream
1 teaspoon rum
1 teaspoon sugar Mix all together in a small bowl.
Apply to top of cheesecake as directed below.
Move the cheesecake to a rack to cool, 5 minutes. Top with the sour cream topping, and bake 5 more minutes.
Allow the cheesecake to cool completely on rack. Refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving.