Ful disclosure, this is one of those recipes where you can completely leave out the healthy descriptive words like “vegan” out of the title. Consider it a delicious Thanksgiving dessert, period. Making this a “semifreddo” dessert mixes it up a little bit, especially in California when Thanksgiving doesn’t necessarily mean cold temps. We could wake up to an 80 degree day, and in that case this option would be perfectly suited. I use Kite Hill’s almond ricotta as the cheese base, it has a bit of acidity to it and is rich and creamy, making it the perfect pair for pumpkin. This is delicious topped with coconut whipped cream and a sprinkle of pecans.
Pumpkin “Semifreddo” Cheesecake with Kite Hill Ricotta
Makes 1- 8 inch springform pan
1 1/2 cups pecans
pinch sea salt
1 1/2 cups organic pumpkin puree
1 1/2 container Kite Hill Almond “Ricotta” Cheese
1/2 cup maple syrup (I prefer grade A for this, but you can use any grade)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice (adjust to your liking)
Soak dates in hot water for minimum two hours (or overnight for best results). Peel and remove the seed. Line an 8 inch springform pan with a circle cut of parchment paper.
Add the pecans and dates to a food processor with a pinch of sea salt and pulse until a smooth “dough” ball form. The pecans will be broken down and this should will be easy to work with.
Press your pecan and date dough evenly into the base of your parchment lined springform pan, about 1/2 inch – 3/4 inch thick. Place in freezer while you prepare your filling.
In a food processor or high speed blender all all the filling ingredients and taste. Adjust the pumpkin pie spices to your liking, but start with 1 tsp. and add 1/4 tsp if you like a stronger spice flavor. Blend until this is smooth and creamy.
Pout your filling into over top of the pecan and date “dough” base. Spread evenly, smoothing out the top. Place in freezer until approx. 30-45 minutes prior to serving.
Before serving, remove from freezer, remove out springform and remove parchment paper from base. Allow to soften just enough to cut, but retain shape. Serve with coconut whip cream, a drizzle of maple syrup and sprinkle of nuts.