Thinking about Thanksgiving and all the possibilities of yummy food this holiday season had me looking through my recipes for some of my favorite pies that still have the "traditional" apple or pumpkin flavor, but not necessarily the traditional presentation. Here are a few recipes that I like and maybe you might want to try them for your holiday meal this year.
Caramel Apple Cheesecake
1 can (21 oz) Apple Fruit Filling, divided
1 10" graham cracker crust (I tried a 9" the first time and it was very full)
2 pkg (8 oz each) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup caramel topping
12 pecan halves plus 2 Tbsp chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Reserve 3/4 cup apple filling. Spoon remaining filling into crust.
Beat together cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth. Add eggs and mix well. Pour over apple filling. Bake 35 minutes or until center is set. Cool to room temperature.
Mix reserved apple filling and caramel topping in a small saucepan. Heat, about 1 minutes. Arrange apple slices around outside of edge of cheesecake. Spoon caramel sauce onto the cheesecake and spread evenly. Decorate with pecan halves around the edge. Sprinkle with chopped pecans. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Makes 8-12 servings.
Double-Layer Pumpkin Pie
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1 Tbsp milk or half-and-half
1 Tbsp sugar
1 1/2 cups thawed cool whip
1 graham cracker pie crust
1 cup cold milk or half-and-half
2 pkgs (4 serving size) vanilla flavor instant pudding and pie filling
1 can (16 oz) pumpkin
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
Mix cream cheese, 1 Tbsp milk and sugar in large bowl with wire whisk until smooth. Gently stir in whipped topping. Spread on bottom of crust.
Pour 1 cup milk into bowl. Add pudding mix. Beat with wire whist until well blended, 1 to 2 minutes. (Mixture will be thick.)
Stir in pumpkin and spices with wire whisk; mix well. Spread over cream cheese layer. Refrigerate at least 3 hours. Garnish with additional whipped topping and nuts if desired. Makes 8 servings.