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…If the title of this recipe isn’t a mouthful, I don’t know what is. When you say it out loud, it almost sounds ridiculous. But when I saw the recipe in Sunset Magazine, I thought this creation may be too good to be true. I wondered before making it, “too many ingredients?”

The Holy Grail of Thanksgiving Desserts

No. They are all amazing flavors that were obviously made for each other. We first made this as a unique Thanksgiving dessert, and it was so good I think we’ll be making it this year, and the next, and the next…


from Sunset Magazine

Pumpkin-Orange Cheesecake with Chocolate Crust and Salted Caramel


  • 1 package (9 oz.) chocolate wafer cookies
  • 1/2 cup melted unsalted butter
  • 3 packages (8 oz. each) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • Zest of 2 medium oranges
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 6 tablespoons store-bought caramel topping
  • 1/8 teaspoon table salt
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped toasted pecans
  • Flaked salt* (such as Cyprus sea salt flakes or Maldon salt), for garnish


  1. 1. Make crust: Preheat oven to 350°. Whirl cookies in a food processor until finely ground. Whirl in butter just until incorporated. Pour crumbs into a 9-in. springform pan and press over bottom and about 1 in. up inside of pan. Bake 7 minutes, then let cool on a rack. Reduce oven heat to 300°.
  2. 2. Make filling: In a large bowl, with a mixer on medium speed, beat cream cheese, sugars, and flour until smooth. Beat in eggs on low speed 1 at a time. Add remaining filling ingredients and beat until just blended. Wrap bottom of pan with foil, pressing it up the outside.
  3. 3. Set springform pan in a roasting pan and pour filling into crust. Pour enough boiling water into roasting pan to come about halfway up side of springform pan. Bake until cheesecake barely jiggles in the center when gently shaken, about 1 1/4 hours. Let cheesecake cool on a rack 1 hour, then chill until cold, at least 5 hours.
  4. 4. Whisk caramel topping and table salt in a bowl and spoon over cheesecake. Arrange pecans around rim and sprinkle flaked salt over pecans.
  5. *Flaked salt has large, hollow, crunchy crystals. Find it at well-stocked grocery stores and online.
Note:For a fissure-free cheesecake, beat your filling just until it’s blended–no more. (Too much air in the mixture will make it deflate, and then crack, in the oven.) Find pumpkin pie spice in your baking aisle, or make your own: 4 parts cinnamon, 2 parts ground ginger, 1 part nutmeg, and 1 part ground allspice.