How Pumpkin Pie turned into Chocolate Cheesecake

I was SUPER excited to attempt to make my first ever pumpkin pie…..from a pumpkin.  I bought my pumpkin and had all the ingredients ready to go.  I was planning on making it at my parents’ house on Wednesday before we left the next morning.  When I was cutting the pumpkin, it seemed a little soft, but I had no idea what it should feel like.  After it was cut open, I discovered that soft is not good for pumpkins.  It was MOLDY!  And it was 5PM on the day before Thanksgiving.  So, I turned to a classic, and my favorite, Chocolate Cheesecake!  That was the only thing we had all the ingredients for, so cheesecake for Thanksgiving it was. 

However, does anyone have any suggestions how to avoid having the grand canyon of cracks down my cheesecake?  My aunt suggested putting a cake pan on the rack above it while it’s baking.  Anything else?

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2 thoughts on “How Pumpkin Pie turned into Chocolate Cheesecake

  1. Here’s one way to prevent the cheesecake from cracking: bake it in a water bath. First cover the outside (bottom and as far up the sides as you can get) of your springform pan with 3 layers of heavy-duty aluminum foil. Then make the crust and the cheesecake as you normally would but when you bake it, put the pan in a big roasting pan and put it in the oven. Then pour hot water into the roasting pan til it’s about an inch or two deep. Then bake as normal.

    You’ll find the cheesecake bakes more evenly and that the top doesn’t crack. (I learned this from Cook’s Illustrated, see step 4 of this recipe: http://www.cooksillustrated.com/recipes/detail.asp?docid=6303)

  2. Hi Amanda! The trick to getting a cheesecake to come out perfectly with no cracks: cover the bottom of the springform pan in foil then place that in a shallow pan of water while it bakes. The moisture will prevent the cracking. Also, don’t take the cheesecake out of the hot oven right away. After you turn the oven off, leave the cheesecake in there until it cools to room temp. The shock of going from a hot oven to room temp also makes it crack. Good luck with your next one!

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