I met Monique (well cyber met) through my last blog.  “MoDiva” found me and followed me on my painful quest to find a husband, which as we all know was unsuccessful, sometimes amusing (I think), and inevitably doomed through my lack of “go getter” attitude. 

On a daily basis Mo would post comments on my blog and on the days she didn’t, myself and a number of my close friends would get very nervous – usually because we all looked forward to her comments.

The whole time I had no idea Mo had the most amazing blog that I am now glued to on a daily basis to see what fantastic dish she is going create, make and serve up.  I am really excited she is doing me the honor of being my next “Guest Blogger”.  Please go “Food Snob:  More than just a picky eater” to view Monique’s fabulous Blog.

Welcome Guest Blogger:  Mo

My name is Mo and I have been a food blogger for going on 3 years and its become second nature to whip out my camera for anything remotely food related.

I have always had a passion for cooking but as of late I have been dabbling in the baking department. I was always intimidated by baking and after a few aggressive pep talks with other foodie friends I decided that I will never be successful if I don’t try… and even mistakes can taste delicious. I have been a long time Reader of the Fabulous Tracey and was beyond delighted to be invited to guest post. So I’d like to share with you one of my Thanksgiving desserts and hope you all enjoy it!

Over thanksgiving my family bestowed upon me the honor of making dessert. There was a catch though. One dessert was chosen by my family and the other was my choice, a wild card if you will. The day I received this news I fervently began to search the Internet for a recipe of something that would not only be tasty but would be simple to make, yet impressive.

Yes, these desserts exist. I work a full time job, I blog, I try to keep an active social life… finding time to bake sometimes can be difficult. But you CAN create something wonderful in no time!

The Internet search proved to be overwhelming. Do you know how many hits one gets when they Google “Thanksgiving Desserts”? Too many! That evening on the way home from work, I picked up the latest issue of Food and Wine Magazine. Drooling and flipping through the magazine I was instantly amazed at the photo of a slice of pumpkin cheesecake with brown butter pears. I dog eared the page and the rest is history.

Pumpkin Cheesecake with Ginger Snap Crust (Adapted from Jane Tseng’s Recipe http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/pumpkin-cheesecake-with-brown-butter-pears)

What you will need:

16 ounces of Gingersnap Cookies, Pulverized
4 tablespoons of butter, melted
2 8oz packages of cream cheese, Softened
1 15 oz can of pumpkin puree
2/3 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice

Method:

– Preheat your oven to 350*

 

– place gingersnaps in a Ziploc baggie and beat the crap out of them.. or if you’re fancy, pulverize them in your food processor. My food processor is awful so I’d rather beat the crap out of a Ziploc baggie with my rolling pin. *note: great stress reliever!*

 

– In a small bowl combine, ginger snap crumbs and butter. Divide the wet crumbs into 2 pie plates or a spring form pan. I used foil pie pans. Set the pie pans in the oven for 7 minutes to set the crusts.

– In a mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, pumpkin puree, vanilla, sugar, flour, and pumpkin pie spice. If you are using a stand mixer, use your flat beater and mix on level two for several minutes or until the batter is no longer lumpy. If you are using a hand mixer, have at it on high for 5 or 8 minutes until the batter is thick and creamy.

 
 

– Divide the batter between the two pie pans. Place the pie pans in the center of the oven and bake for 25 – 30 mins or until the center of the pie is no longer jiggly. Because I am paranoid about over baking, I usually check on the pie after 20 minutes. Sometimes my oven surprises me and bakes things quickly… **

 

– Allow the pies to cool and refrigerate for at least 2 hrs before serving. I served myself a slice with some whipped cream and went to heaven.

My family was pleased. In my opinion its the perfect balance of sweetness and creaminess. My mother who loves all things sugary sweet and my father who loves cinnamon spicy desserts BOTH licked their plates. This is a triumph in the Snob house.

**Confession: Because I never know how to do one thing at a time I dropped my 2nd pie plate of gingersnap crumbs and had to make a mad dash to the grocery store for an alternative. I couldn’t find gingersnaps so I got a ready made graham cracker crust that made a PERFECT substitute….so if making your own crust scares you, don’t worry – the store bought stuff is still awesome. So i cheated… a little.**

Optional: I DID make the brown butter pears for the pie topping but no one was interested in them… I tried them with the pie- twas amazing but this dessert is amazing on its own.

I hope you enjoy it and impress your guests with your awesome baking skills.  

Tracey