These Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes with Coconut Whipped Cream are my contribution to this year’s feast. Even though I’m a vegetarian, Thanksgiving has always been my favourite holiday. It’s our harvest festival and all around there are vibrant reminders of nature’s beauty and abundance, even as the weather cools and life starts to recede in the most glorious way. Senescing leaves know what it’s all about: they give beauty and let go.
Summer is always a slog for me, but I come alive again in autumn, refreshed by the cool undercurrent of the wind. Jogging along the canal is a real treat these days. As I pass through the arboretum, I see the trees change a bit more each day, I hear geese and ducks gathering on Dow’s Lake and preparing for their long journey south, I shiver a little and welcome it. The people I pass seem to smile more or maybe I’m more apt to notice because I’m happier too.
This year I’ve learned that gratitude is a simple thing, yet vast. Saying thank you causes an internal shift. It brings us to the moment and allows us to focus on what is, rather than what is not. I have a long list of things to be thankful for that I keep close to my heart. Many of those “things” will be indulging in pumpkin cheesecake before long.
Soon my grant applications will be off my desk. As October goes on and things get still, I’m looking forward to receding into my little writing cave, sinking into my manuscript again and forgetting about the world beyond my story until spring calls me out again. That last part is mostly a wish. ;)
Hey, I’m grateful for you too, wherever you are. I suppose there’s nothing more to say than thank you for stopping by.
Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes
2 c ginger snap cookies, finely crushed
1/2 c pecans, finely crushed
1/4 c butter, melted
3 pkg cream cheese, softened
1 c pumpkin puree (not pie pumpkin pie filling)
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1. Preheat oven at 325 degrees. Line muffin pan with paper or foil liners.
2. For the crust base, combine ginger cookies, pecans and butter. Spoon into muffin liners and press down with back of spoon. Set aside.
3. For the filling, using and electric mixer, beat together cream cheese, 1/2 c sugar and vanilla. Add one egg at a time. Reserve 1 cup of the plain batter and set aside.
4. Add the rest of the sugar (1/4 cup), pumpkin and spices and mix well.
5. Spoon pumpkin batter onto the cookie crusts. Top with a spare spoonful of the plain batter. Swirl gently with a knife.
6. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Cool completely. Refrigerate for 2 hours. Makes about 24 mini cheesecakes.
Coconut Whipped Cream
1 can full-fat coconut milk, refrigerated overnight to separate coconut cream from water. Do not shake.
1/4 – 3/4 icing sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1. Chill metal mixing bowl for 10 minutes.
2. Remove the coconut solids from water.
3. Using an electric mixer, beat coconut solids for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add vanilla and sugar. Beat for 1-2 minutes. Use right away or store in the fridge for up to two weeks.
Thank you! I’m happy to report they were a hit. ;)
Oh, yum! I have shared this recipe link with my resident healthy meal person and cool weather baker.
Oh wonderful! Thanks so much! Hope you enjoyed the long weekend. :)
I love how you’ve described Autumn and how you feel about it, I love Autumn, it’s my favourite season :)
Thanks so much, Elaine! It’s my season too, even though I was born in the spring. Thanks for sharing! :)
Me too!! How funny :) what’s your birthday?
Oh really, how neat! :) My b-day is March 21, spring equinox. How about you? Are you a fellow Aries, ha ha?
I am!!! March 23rd :) xx
Oh wow, no wonder we get along, ha ha! I love it :)
Absolutely!!! great minds :) xx
Ha ha, yes!! :)
Oh my Anita, these are simply lovely! The ginger snaps, pecans, nutmeg! these are just tooo good!
Thank you, Lynn! That’s very sweet! I’m happy to report that my family enjoyed them. I felt so good to get messy and bake something. Sharing is the best part. :)
They are amazing and delightful to look at!!!
Well, that just made my day! :)
:) I am so glad I was really tickled over these cute little bites!
These look lovely! In Spain, it’s commonplace to buy roasted pumpkin to eat on its own as a dessert, but I always found it too sweet. But with a nice biscuit base… mmm!
Thanks so much, Claire! It was my first time baking a pumpkin cheesecake, and I have to say, the spicy nuttiness of the crust really gave the overall cake the right texture. I loved hearing about the roasted pumpkin in Spain. Now that’s a healthy dessert. Way healthier than the one I made, ha ha. ;)
I love how this post combines some of my favorite things: October/fall, that feeling of thanks, walks along the canal…and cheesecake (pumpkin cheesecake at that!). I can’t wait to try this out (although it may have to wait for November when things calm down around here). Thanks for the great recipe!
Oh wonderful, Kas! It’s always great to meet another Autumn lover. We totally lucked out with the weather this long weekend. Went for lots of strolls. I tried my best to soak in all the colours. I hope you enjoy the recipe when you have the chance to make it. :) Thanks for sharing!
No problem! I can’t wait to try it! Glad you had a nice weekend full of strolls!
Hi, Anita! I’m hoping to make a batch of these and I noticed the instructions say to add sugar, but I couldn’t find the amount of sugar on the ingredient list. I’m not sure if I’m missing something or if it was left off my mistake. Anyway, I can’t wait to try them. Don’t worry if you can’t reply right away–I’m sure I can figure it out, just wanted to let you know. Happy Thanksgiving! :)
Hi Kas! Thanks so much for pointing this out to me! The recipe calls for 3/4 cup of white sugar, divided. So you use 1/2 cup before adding the pumpkin, reserve a cup of the mixture and the add the remaining sugar. Sorry for the late reply but I am in Toronto for the reading and yesterday was a bit of a blur. Happy Thanksgiving to you and I hope the recipe works out! :-)
No problem! Sorry to bug you while you are away! I just winged it and guessed it was about 3/4 cup, so it all worked out in the end. They were delicious and everyone enjoyed them! Thanks so much for sharing the recipe!
No worries, it was no bother at all, I only felt bad for not getting back to you sooner! I’m usually a little better with that sort of thing, well, sometimes. :-) I’m so pleased that you tried the recipe and it worked out. I hope that you had a lovely Thanksgiving and are enjoying lots of leftovers!
So, I was one of the lucky few who had a chance to sample these delicious treats! The coconut cream was amazing!
Yay! I’m so glad you liked them. :D I don’t think I’ll go back to regular whipped cream ever again. xx
Oh Anita! What a real treat to read this blog post! Love your description of Autumn and I cannot wait to make these! They sound heavenly!!! Hope you had a fabulous holiday! Blessings to you!
Thank you, Book Sis!! I’m so pleased that you enjoyed the post. :) Thanksgiving was all I could have asked for – good weather, good food, good company. And yours is just around the corner too! I hope you like cheesecakes. Let me know how they turn out for you!
The instructions are easy to follow, and the results were better then expected. Many thanks for sharing the recipe 😉. Great with a cuppa tea
Anita – happy belated Thanksgiving. I also LOVE autumn, but then I love summer and spring too. I figure you get one season to complain about – and for me – it’s winter. The little cheesecakes are adorable. I love pumpkin anything!
Thank you, Lindy! Happy belated Thanksgiving to you too. :D I hope you had a lovely time with your family. It was my first time making cheesecakes but they seemed to go over well, ha ha. Also, they were tiny enough to not be overwhelming after a big meal. I still have a lot of leftover pumpkin and I’ve been wondering what to do with it. Do you have a favourite pumpkin recipe? Ha ha, I think winter wears on us all, especially by February! Thanks for stopping by :)
Just lovely Anita! I would love to try this!
Thanks so much! :) If you’re a fan of pumpkin pie and cheesecake then this is kind of a perfect marriage. Can’t wait to try your crepe recipe too! :)
I am definitely. I make my own spices and one is pumpkin pie spice. :)
Ooo, I love that! Do you use cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves? Just curious, ha ha. :)
I use a variety of spices. Some of the major ones are cloves, all spice, cinnamon, vanilla and more. :)
Wonderful! It sounds like a great spice mix. :)
Yes ginger is in there too. :)
Yum yum! :-)
Thanks, Sherrill! Hope all is well with you! :)
Gah! I’ve just remembered how gorgeous these are and now my stomach’s rumbling! :-)
In other news, I’ve tagged you for the Confessions of a Writer tag:
Please don’t feel you have to do it. I know lots of bloggers don’t have time for tags/awards. But if you do have the chance to do it, it’s a nice opportunity to tell everyone a bit more about your writing :-)
Thank you so much, Claire, for the baking compliment and for tagging me! I really enjoyed reading your answers. I would love to participate and hope to soon! :D
Trade you some choc bundt cake for one of these little beauties?!
That sounds like a fantastic deal to me, ha ha! ;-) Thank you for stopping by!
Thank you, Kas!! I wish I could send you some. The Internet really needs to fix that problem, ha ha. ;-)
The resident artiste and experimental baker made these yesterday for us to enjoy as our Halloween dinner dessert. Very tasty! I limited myself to one. Twitter pic: https://twitter.com/Organicstarship/status/660610709080768512
Oh wow, thanks so much for letting me know! You made my day! :D
Thank you! I kind of wish I had frozen some to enjoy now, ha ha. Thanks so much for stopping by! :-)