butternut squash cheesecake

butternut squash cheesecake plated

This is a 6.5" spring form pan because I don't want excess sweets around for longer than a few days. This is a good size pan even for a party because people usually act all, "oh-just-a-little-piece-for-me" about dessert anyway, then I end up with half a gigantic cheese cake, or even a regular cake for that matter I really don't want it around no matter how good it is because then I must take it around and beg it off on people then go around again to retrieve my plates or feel compelled to eat it and I don't want that. How else do you imagine I maintain my slender boyish figure?

I intended to halve a successful recipe based on chocolate and apply that halved recipe to butternut squash. That didn't work out as I first visualized. I could tell I needed more than half the amount of cream cheese and it wasn't possible to halve three eggs. Well it is possible, but I didn't want to. So it's possible this mixture turns out a little bit eggy. Maybe not.

The mixture is made more interesting with sour cream, 1/2 cup in the original recipe, a few tablespoons for this one. The original has a chocolate ganache topping, this one has a topping of sour cream (+ sugar +vanilla).

I didn't want spices to discolor the mixture so I left them out, although I did like the ginger and orange from the previous pie so I put those things in -- grated fresh ginger and grated orange peel, so-called zest because it's definitely zesty. Pinch of salt. I started out with 1/4 cup sugar, tasted, deemed insufficiently sweet, then increased by a few tablespoons. Vanilla in the mixture, because everything's better with vanilla. Woot!

As to the butternut: My mixer is such a clever thing, it has an additional shaft, usually covered, that allows a small processor or a blender to be attached. In that smaller processor which saves the trouble of dragging out another heavy-duty motor device, the Cuisinart, I processed to slurry 1/2 a large butternut squash that I had roasted previously and saved specifically for this. It does such fine job in that smaller processing bowl. Added the processed butternut slurry to the cheese/sour cream/ egg/ sugar/ vanilla mixture and tasted. Insufficient flavor intensity. Processed half a sweet potato that was roasted earlier and saved along with the butternut squash and added that too. So now, by weight and by mass I have exceeded the amount of non-cheese cake flavoring material that corresponds to the chocolate in the original recipe, which was a mere 6 oz. So I really don't know but I can intuit how the egg will set up all this gourd and root material. I do like to live dangerously on the edge of failure like that. I tasted again. The filling with its raw egg tasted excellent. So that's how I arrived at the filling. Call it what you will, I'm calling it cheesecake because it has 12 oz. of cream cheese even though it has more than that of butternut squash and sweet potato.

Butternut squash cheesecake <---See? Truth in advertising.

The crust is standard graham cracker crust except with ginger snaps comprising 50% of the biscuits used. Melted butter added to the crumbs and pressed into the pan to form a new cookie-type crust, just like normal, mindful that the ginger snaps had a little too much butter to begin with. Baked in a water bath on low heat (325℉) for 45 minutes. Allowed to cool down inside the oven with the oven door open, then chilled to set.

I am not showing all of the gourd cutting, roasting, oiling, scooping, and processing because it's boring and it's just a mess anyway. The photos are not instructive or interesting. And I will not show the mixing of ingredients because -- why bother? -- it's just a bunch of crap in a mixer. You've seen it a million times, you can imagine it. Eh, it was pale orange. Here is the finished cheesecake
* in a water bath in the oven
* removed from oven but not yet freed from spring form pan
* topped with sweetened and vanilla-ized sour cream.
* and way up there ↑ at the top of the post, chilled and served.

cheesecake in the oven

cheesecake out of the oven

cheesecake with topping

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