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California Pizza Kitchen's Pumpkin Cheesecake
Serving Size: 12

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method

Cooking Directions:
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1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs -- (about 22 sheets,
finely crushed with a rolling pin)
3 tablespoons sugar
6 tablespoons unsalted butter -- melted
3 packages cream cheese - (8 oz ea)
1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar - (firmly packed)
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour -- plus
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1 cup sour cream -- plus
2 tablespoons sour cream
3 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups canned pumpkin puree

To Make the Graham Cracker Crust: Put the graham cracker crumbs in a food
processor fitted with the steel blade and process until they have a
uniformly fine texture. Add the sugar and pulse to combine. With the
machine running, pour the melted butter through the feed tube and continue
processing just until the mixture forms a soft mass. Remove from the
processor and firmly press the mixture into the base of a 9-inch
springform pan, spreading it evenly.

To Make the Cheesecake: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater attachment,
beat the cream cheese until soft, stopping the mixer occasionally to
scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Add
the brown sugar and continue beating until thoroughly incorporated and

In a separate small bowl, stir together the flour, cinnamon, cardamom,
cloves, ginger, and nutmeg. Add the flour mixture to the cream cheese
mixture and beat until thoroughly combined, stopping occasionally to
scrape down the bowl. In the same way, beat in the sour cream and then,
one at a time, the eggs, scraping down the bowl after each addition. Add
the vanilla and pumpkin and beat until thoroughly combined.

Pour the filling into the prepared springform pan and place on the center
rack of the oven. Bake for 1 hour. Protecting your hands with oven mitts
or pads, test for doneness by gently moving the pan to see if the center
of the cheesecake has firmed up -- a sign of doneness -- or is still
slightly fluid (alternatively, check the cheesecake's internal temperature
with an instant-read thermometer, which should register 180 degrees). The
cheesecake may require up to 20 minutes more baking time.

When it is done, let it cool to room temperature and then refrigerate it
overnight before removing the side of the pan. Cut the cheesecake into
wedges with a sharp knife.

This recipe yields 12 servings.

Comments: Sweetly spiced with traditional pumpkin-pie seasonings, this
luscious cheesecake appears as a special on our dessert menus a few weeks
before Thanksgiving and stays until just before Christmas. During that
brief season, our guests go wild for it. Try serving the cheesecake with
a dollop of whipped cream.

© 2008
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