Autumn & the Comforting Taste of Pumpkin

By Brenda Hyde
Every year as soon as the air starts cooling off I get out my pumpkin recipes. It doesn't seem to matter that I use canned and buy extra to keep on hand all year. I love baking with pumpkin in the autumn. It's one of those wonderful comfort tastes and smells.For years I made my annual pumpkin bread and pie, but didn't venture beyond the traditional. Since then I have realized that pumpkin is nutritious and a frugal choice if you stock up during the autumn sales at the store. Plus, when I bring one of these recipes to a family get together there usually isn't a duplicate!

Maple Pumpkin Cheesecake
1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup margarine or butter, melted
3 packages (8 ounces) of cream cheese
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
2 cups canned pumpkin
3 eggs
1/4 cup maple syrup plus extra if you wish
1 1/2 Glenbrook ground gourmet cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
Whipped topping
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 300 degrees, Combine crumbs, sugar and margarine. Press firmly on bottom of 9 inch springform pan or 13x9 inch baking pan. In large bowl, beat cheese until light. Gradually beat in condensed milk until smooth. Add pumpkin, eggs, 1/4 cup maple syrup, and spices. Mix well. Pour into pan. Bake 1 hour and 15 minutes or edge springs back when touched; the middle will still be slightly soft. Cool. Chill 2-4 hours. Serve each piece with by sprinkling with pecans, top with whipped cream and drizzle with extra maple syrup.

Pumpkin Coffeecake
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
3 eggs
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup sour cream
1-3/4 cup pumpkin (16 oz)
1 slight beaten egg
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup butter
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 cup crushed nuts
Cream butter, 3/4 cup sugar and vanilla in bowl, add eggs and beat well. 
Combine flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Add ingredients to butter mixture, alternating with sour cream. Combine pumpkin, egg, 1/3 cup sugar, and pie spice. Keep separate.

Prepare Streusel by mixing ingredients together with fork or hands until crumbly. Set aside.

Spoon half batter mixture into 9 x 13 pan, sprinkle half of the streusel over the batter. Spread the pumpkin mixture over the streusel. Carefully spread the remaining batter over the pumpkin mixture. Sprinkle the remaining streusel over the top. Bake at 325 degrees for 50-60 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.

Baked Pumpkin Casserole
1 can ( 1 pound 13 ounces) pumpkin, 3 cups
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. salt
dash pepper
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 cup, chopped pecans
1/2 cup light-brown sugar, firmly packed
1/4 cup maple syrup1/2 cup pecan halves

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease 1 quart casserole. Combine pumpkin, sugar, butter, nutmeg, salt, pepper, eggs and chopped pecans in large bowl, Mix well, and turn into casserole. Make Glaze: mix brown sugar and syrup in small saucepan. Heat while stirring, until sugar is dissolved; then bring to a boil. Remove from heat and cool slightly. Arrange pecan halves around the edge of casserole. Cover pumpkin and pecans with glaze; bake 40 minutes. Makes 6-8 servings.

Pumpkin Pudding
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
4 eggs, separated
1 pound can of pumpkin
6 ice cubes
3 tsp. pumpkin pie spiceIn medium pan combine sugar, water and gelatin. 
Let stand 1 minute. Beat in egg yolks using a wire whisk. Cook over medium heat, stirring, until gelatin is dissolved and mixture is thick and foamy, about 3 minutes. Pour into 5 cup blender container. Add remaining ingredients. Process at high speed until ice is melted, about 2 minutes. Pour into serving dishes. Chill until set, about 1-2 hours. Serves 8. If desired top with crushed pecans and whipped cream.

Pumpkin Ice Cream
1 cup canned or cooked pumpkin
1/4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 quart vanilla ice cream, softened 
In a medium bowl, mix the pumpkin and pie spice until well blended. Stir in ice cream. Freeze until ready to serve. Garnish with gingersnaps. 4-6 servings.