2 x 250g packets granita biscuits
2 x 250g packets cream cheese, softened
1 3/4 cups caster sugar
400g pumpkin, cooked and mashed
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp mixed spice
1/4 tsp salt
150g dark cooking chocolate
Pecan halves to decorate
Preheat oven to 180C. Line a 39 x 25 x 3cm baking tin with baking paper.
To make crust, put biscuits in a food processor and pulse until finely crumbed. Add 110g of the butter and continue pulsing until mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Mix in a large bowl. Press mixture evenly into bottom of prepared tin. Bake for 10 minutes or until set.
Put cream cheese and sugar in the large bowl of an electric mixer and beat on medium speed until combined. Reduce speed and add eggs, 1 at a time, until just combined. Stir in pumpkin, vanilla, mixed spice and salt. Pour pumpkin mixture over hot crust, spreading evenly.
Bake for 30-35 minutes or until slightly puffed around edges and just set in centre. Cool in tin on a wire rack.
Put chocolate and remaining butter in a small microwave-safe bowl and microwave on 100% (high) for 30-60 seconds or until softened. Stir until smooth. Spread chocolate mixture over cheesecake. Decorate with pecans. Cover and chill for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight. Using edges of baking paper, lift cheesecake from tin. Cut into squares and serve.
Cook's Tip! You'll need 500g raw, unpeeled pumpkin to yield 400g cooked, mashed pumpkin. Boiling and steaming are the best way to retrieve the natural flavour. If you roast the pumpkin, the taste will be too strong.
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