Tags: caramel, cheesecake, pumpkin
“I’m backkkkkkk…!!” says the cupcake logo to the left.
You guessed it! It’s Cupcake Hero time!
I am fresh off my recent cupcake hero win and feeling pretty darn cocky. I am allowed right? It’s a Cupcake Hero win for goodness sakes. I don’t think you understand the magnitude of the situation. It took me 9 tries, lots of bribes and a frillion lbs of butter. Don’t take my moment away from me!
::taking a moment to relish my CH victory::
Ok I am done now.
Before anyone starts doubting my squash selection, I just wanna go on the record and say that pumpkin is a type of squash. Did you know that? I didn’t. Apparently I am not up on my squash edumacation [sic]. But head CH baker, Laurie, confirmed that indeed pumpkin is a type of squash. Hmmm… let’s keep this new found squash knowledge to ourselves m’kay? I have a feeling that if more Cupcake Hero-ers find out, pumpkin will be the squash of choice. Personally I wasn’t feeling the Petite Pan Squash option myself. Sorry its true. Can you blame me? Its a green amoeba! That doesn’t scream cupcake to me. Just saying… HAHA.
Now I know that my entry will stir up a debate b/c I’ve already had a couple naysayers who I gave privy info about my Cupcake Hero entry argue that my entry doesn’t count. *cough NIKKI cough* but I kinda see it as my month of immunity since I won the last challenge you know? So I am doing something a little controversial and posing the question:
What makes a cupcake… a cupcake?
Check out my nifty WP poll below and vote. (I ♥ this new WP feature!)
Feel free to vote for multiple answers that apply.
You’ll see from the recipe below that I have 2 out of the 3 answers. I guess I’d say in order of cupcake importance: baked in a cupcake liner, frosting/topping and then texture. A non-cakey texture isn’t a cupcake deal breaker for me.
So have I convinced you…? Is my recipe a cupcake?
(If you aren’t Nikki, b/c I already know how she feels on the situation, just nod your head yes and agree. That’s a good little reader.)
Makes about 14 cupcakes
For the crust
1-1/2 cups finely ground gingersnap cookies (I used graham crackers)
1-1/2 cups toasted pecans, finely ground
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter, melted
[NOTES: I had alot of crust left over so next time I’ll probably 1/2 the recipe.]
For the cheesecake
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 pinch ground cloves
1 pinch ground nutmeg
For whipped cream
1-1/2 cups whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp granulated sugar
caramel ice cream topping, garnish
Preheat oven to 350F.
To make crust—
Combine gingersnap cookies, pecans and sugar in bowl; add melted butter and mix until combined.
Press crust mixture onto bottom of each cupcake liner, about 1 tbsp. Set aside.
To make cheesecake—
In a stand mixer with a flat beater, combine cream cheese, sugar and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Blend in eggs one at a time.
Add pumpkin, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg to the remaining batter and stir gently until well blended. Fill the cupcake liners almost full (cheesecake doesn’t rise that much).
Bake in preheated oven for 22-25 minutes, or until center is almost set. Allow to cool, then refrigerate for 3 hours or overnight. Cover with whipped topping before serving.
To make whipped cream—
In mixer with whisk attachment, whip the cream, vanilla extract and sugar on high speed until you get stiff peaks.
To assemble cupcakes—
Using a 1M star tip, pipe whipped cream on cupcake. Drizzle with caramel.
Husband rating: A+
He really loved this recipe but he preferred it naked (no whip or caramel) and raved about the graham-pecan crust.
Wifey rating: A/A+
I am not a pumpkin fan but these were really good esp with that caramel drizzle. Everything’s better with a little caramel!
Other rating: A+
I brought it over for a family dinner. The whole family raved and requested I make it for Thanksgiving!