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•    1/4 recipe of Soft Molasses Cookie dough (see below)
•    1 pound 8 ounces (three 8 ounces packages) cream cheese, room temperature
•    1 cup sugar
•    1/4 cup brown sugar
•    2 Tablespoons cornstarch
•    2 large eggs
•    1 3/4 cups pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
•    1 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
•    1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
•    2/3 cup evaporated milk

Sour Cream Topping
•    1 pound (2 cups) sour cream
•    1/3 cup sugar
•    1 teaspoon vanilla

How to Make a Perfect Pumpkin Cheesecake
1.    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2.    Take a 9 inch springform pan apart, line the bottom plate with aluminum foil, then reassemble the pan. Pull the excess foil up and around the pan to prevent any batter from leaking into the oven. Spray sides and bottom with vegetable spray.
3.    Make 1/4 batch of Soft Molasses Cookies Recipe. Or better yet, make the whole batch and bake cookies with the rest of the dough!
4.    Pat the molasses cookie dough on the bottom only of the springform pan. Bake for 12-15 minutes for a soft cookie crust. Bake a few minutes longer for a crispier gingersnap crust. Remove from oven, set aside, and let cool while making the cheesecake batter.
5.    Leave oven on 350 degrees. Place a pan of hot water in the bottom of the oven and close the door.
6.    In a mixing bowl on medium speed, beat cream cheese until smooth ~ about 3 minutes. Scrape down sides half way through.
7.    Add sugars and cornstarch and beat again, scraping a few times. The mixture should be smooth. Add eggs 1 at a time. Beat until creamy.
8.    Fold the pumpkin, cinnamon and nutmeg into the mixture and beat again.
9.    Slowly add the evaporated milk and beat only enough so there are no lumps and the filling is nice and fluffy. Scrape as needed.
10.    Pour batter into prepared pan on top of previously baked molasses cookie crust, and bake at 350 degrees for 55-60 minutes.
11.    About 15 minutes before the pumpkin cheesecake is done, mix all sour cream topping ingredients (see below) until smooth and sugar is dissolved.
12.    When cheesecake comes out of the oven, carefully pour sour cream batter on top of cheesecake. Immediately return cheesecake to oven, and bake for another 10-15 minutes or until set.
13.    See the link above for further baking, cooling, serving and freezing instructions.
14.    Makes one 9 inch cheesecake. Serves 14. Wrap and refrigerate any leftovers

Soft Molasses Cookie Recipe
•    1/2 – 1 cup sugar for rolling cookies
•    6 cups all purpose flour
•    1 teaspoon salt
•    2 Tablespoons baking soda
•    1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
•    2 teaspoons ground cloves
•    2 teaspoons ground ginger
•    2 cups (one pound) butter, softened
•    3 cups brown sugar, packed
•    3/4 cup molasses, your choice
•    3 large eggs
•    1 cup raisins, optional
•    1 cup chopped nuts, optional

Directions:
1.    This is a large batch of 48 cookies. If you don’t have at least a 5 quart mixer, divide the recipe in half.
2.    Prepare baking sheets by lining them with parchment paper or give it a good spritz with vegetable spray shortening.
3.    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. An oven thermometer is a handy item to have to insure your temperature is where it should be. Adjust if neccessary.
4.    Measure 1/2 – 1 cup sugar in a large bowl for rolling cookies and set aside.
5.    Blend flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and ginger in a large bowl and set aside.
6.    In a large mixing bowl with a beater attachment, beat butter until creamy.
7.    Add brown sugar and molasses and beat until fluffy. Scrape bowl.
8.    Add eggs, one at a time and beat until light and fluffy. Scrape bowl again.
9.    Add flour mixture a few cups at a time and mix only until well blended and scrape once more.
10.    Add optional raisins and/or nuts.
11.    Cover dough and chill for 30 minutes.
12.    With a cookie scoop or Tablespoon, scoop and roll into balls. Roll cookies in sugar.
13.    Place cookies on prepared baking sheets leaving some spreading room between them.
14.    Bake at 350 degrees for 11-13 minutes or until slightly firm.
15.    Remove to cooling racks and cool completely before storing in airtight containers.
16.    Makes 48 warm, soft molasses cookies.

Variations:
•    Soft Molasses Raisin Cookies: Add 1 cup plump raisins to the dough before baking.
•    Soft Molasses Walnut Cookies: Add 1 cup chopped walnuts to the cookie dough before baking

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