Saturday, October 29, 2011

Day 29: Happiness Is Cheesecake

"We tend to forget that happiness doesn't come as a result of getting something we don't have, but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have."

- Frederick Keonig

Well, what I do have is cheesecake.  Pumpkin Praline Cheesecake, to be exact.
And it sure does make me happy.

I found the recipe in the Kraftfoods What's Cooking magazine, Fall 2011 issue.  I've never attempted cheesecake before, but decided to give it a try.  I'm glad I did!

Here's the recipe... it just might bring you a little bit of happiness too...

Pumpkin Praline Cheesecake


3/4 cup Graham Crumbs (I like to buy the crackers since we can use them for other things, then just chop into crumbs in the food processor)
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans (once again, food processor works like a charm)
3/4 cup packed brown sugar, divided
3/4 cup granulated sugar, divided
1/4 cup butter, melted
1-1/2 cups canned pumpkin
3 eggs
1-1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
3 pkg. (250 g each) Brick Cream Cheese, softened
1 Tbsp. cornstarch

1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 Tbsp. water
1/2 cup chopped pecans



  1. MIX graham crumbs, nuts, 1/4 cup each brown and granulated sugar, and butter; press onto bottom of 9-inch springform pan. Refrigerate 1 hour. 
  2. HEAT oven to 350ºF. Whisk pumpkin, remaining brown sugar, eggs and spices until well blended. Beat cream cheese, remaining granulated sugar and cornstarch in large bowl with mixer until well blended. Add pumpkin mixture; mix just until blended. Pour over crust. 
  3. BAKE 45 to 50 min. or until centre is almost set. Run knife around rim of pan to loosen cake; cool completely before removing rim.
  4. REFRIGERATE for 4 hours. Meanwhile, prepare Praline.


  1. BRING sugar and water to boil in small saucepan on medium-high heat, stirring constantly. Continue boiling, without stirring, 5 to 7 min. or until syrup is thickened and golden brown.
  2. REMOVE from heat. Stir in nuts.
  3. SPREAD onto parchment-covered baking sheet. Cool.
  4. BREAK into bite-size pieces.  

TOP cheesecake with praline and whipped cream just before serving.

A few of my mistakes to avoid...

Please put a pan or cookie sheet under the cheesecake while baking.  I didn't and now have an oven that requires some serious cleaning.

I refrigerated the cheesecake between 2-3 hours instead of 4.  So it was still a little soft in the centre.

Also, don't top the entire cheesecake with the praline, like I did.  The praline is like a hard candy and makes for difficult cutting.  Although it won't look as pretty when displayed on the cake plate, next time I'll probably top each piece separately after cutting.

Mmm... a piece of cheesecake happiness. 

What makes you happy?

Thanks for stopping by.

This post is part of my blog series, "31 Days of Words to Live By".  For the month of October, I will be sharing my favourite quotes and sayings while incorporating them into daily life and art projects.

This series was inspired by The Inspired Room, where you'll find other "31 Days" series among many other wonderful things!

Check out the complete series.

I'm sharing this with...

Tip Junkie handmade projects


  1. Your recipe sounds so delicious!!! YUM!! I have never made a real cheesecake before so thanks for your tips to avoid :-)

    So glad you participated in 31 days, your series is great!

  2. Pumpkin cheesecake? Ah, yes please! It looks so yummy! (Your last photo looks like something out of a magazine--great photography.)

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Thank you for your thoughts.