Tuesday, November 26, 2013

It all happened one Thanksgiving Eve…day

Last year I shared the craziness of hosting my first Thanksgiving here. It was a very interesting experience and opened my eyes to the reality of what goes into preparing for the big day. This year I was let off the Thanksgiving hook because we are hosting Christmas instead. I have a feeling just as much prep will be in store for me but it's a month away so I am not going to worry about it yet.

The real reason that I am telling you about this is because last year I made two of my favorite deserts of all time. I am not sure if they tasted so good because they took so much effort, or if they were really that delicious, but I thought I would post a link to the recipes in case you were faced with hosting Thanksgiving, or bringing a desert to someone's house and wanted to try something new. 

The first is the Pecan-Pie Cheesecake. 
This pecan pie and cheesecake combo is absolutely delicious! 
Here is the recipe from Taste of the South. I would link it for you, but the link is gone. AHHH! Good thing I write things down.

Vanilla wafer crust

1 3/4 cups vanilla wafer crumbs
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/3 cup melted butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all ingredients and press into the sides of a 9" springform pan. Bake for 6 minutes and let cool. Reduce oven to 325 degrees for the final step.

Pecan filling

1 cup sugar
2/3 cup dark corn syrup
1/3 cup melted butter
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
1 tsp vanilla extract

Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce and simmer until thickened, about 8/10 minutes, stirring constantly. Pour into crust and set aside. 

Cheesecake Filling

3 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened
1 1/4 cups firmly packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 eggs
2/3 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla extract

Beat cream cheese at medium speed until creamy. Add brown sugar and flour and combine. Add eggs one at a time. Make sure they are completely mixed in. Beat until fluffy. Stir in cream and vanilla and pour over pecan filling. Bake for one hour at 325 degrees. Turn off oven and leave cheesecake in oven for 1 hour to set. (Side note: it is okay if it cracks.) Remove from the oven. Use a knife to loosen the cheesecake from the sides of the pan. 

Let cool. Store in refrigerator (at least 4 hours) until the big presentation. 

Like I said, I made this the day before and it was fantastic! I also used extra vanilla wafer cookies, put them in muffin tins with cupcake liners and then drizzled some extra spoonfuls of pecan pie mix and cheesecake batter to make mini-single servings of the pie/cake (not really sure what to call it). They were fun and yummy. Although none of them made it to Thanksgiving day. 

The other yummy desert that I made was this Chocolate Fudge Pie from Real Simple. It also was delicious.

Photo from Real Simple (Mine wasn't that pretty)
The only downfall was that it took four hours to make. Yes, four hours…that's devotion. 

I hope you all have a fantastic Thanksgiving and are able to get some of the prep work done the day before so that you can relax and enjoy the time with your family and friends.

My first Thanksgiving 2012

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