Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Fall is a time for harvest, frosty mornings, the smell of wood stoves, colored leaves and pumpkins, but best of all is the smell that fills the house when those pumpkins are brought into the house and cooked into delicious soups, pies, muffins and squares.

 I just discovered this recipe somewhere on the web 
and tried it for the first time last week. 
We loved it!
It meshes two of our favorite deserts
...cheesecake and pumpkin pie 
into one and is so much easier to make.
The pecans and cinnamon add a nice flavor and crunch to the bars.
This recipe is a repeater!

1 c. all purpose flour
1/3 c. packed brown sugar
5 tbsp. butter, softened
1/2 c. finely chopped pecans or walnuts
1 (8 oz.) pkg. softened cream cheese
3/4 c. sugar
1/2 c. pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground allspice
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Combine flour and brown sugar in medium bowl. Cut in butter to make a crumb mixture. Stir in nuts. Set aside 3/4 cup mixture for topping. Press remaining mixture into bottom of 8 x 8 inch baking pan. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 15 minutes. Cool slightly. Combine cream cheese, sugar, pumpkin, eggs, cinnamon, allspice, and vanilla in large mixer bowl. Blend until smooth. Pour over baked crust. Sprinkle with reserved topping. Bake an additional 30-35 minutes. Cool before cutting into bars. Makes 32 x 2 inch bars. If you double recipe and put in a spring form pan it makes a wonderful cheesecake (increase baking time).

On a healthier note, 
I bought ten pounds of carrots and have been busy
cooking and pureeing them for the freezer to be used later in soups
...found a great recipe for Carrot and Sweet Potato Soup I'm anxious to try...
and grating them for this yummy 
Carrot Bran Muffin recipe I found.
Carrot Bran Muffins 

Carrot Bran Muffins
1 1/2 cups of flour
1 cup of bran
1/2 cup of brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp of cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cloves
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup soured milk (sour with vinegar) or buttermilk
1/2 cup of oil
1 tablespoons of molasses
1 1/2 cups of grated carrots
1 cup of raisins
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix your bran with the milk and let it sit.
Combine all your dry ingredients and whisk them together.

To your bran mixture add the eggs, molasses and oil, and mix well.Add raisins. (to plump up your raisins heat them  for a couple minutes in a large measuring cup with hot water them for 2 minutes in the microwave0. Drain. Add the grated carrots and mix well. Then add the dry ingredients and combine well.
Line the muffin tins with cupcake papers... they do come out beautifully instead of sticking to the liners. Bake at 350 degrees until the tops spring back when touched, about 15-20 minutes depending on your oven. This will make 16 medium sized muffins or 12 large ones.


  1. Cheesecake and pumpkin pie-- Two of my favorite desserts, so these bars look perfect to me!

    I'm a bit jealous that you're organized enough to puree the carrots for later use-- i'm a bit of a couch potato these days and need to get moving before the harvest passes me by. Thanks for the reminder.

    Happy Fall, Marisa! xo jj

  2. I am going to make those pumpkin cheesecake bars as soon as I get my hands on some cream cheese!