Monday, November 1, 2010

Pumpkin Pie Bars

Pumpkin Pie Squares are a favorite of Jeff's and they are made every Thanksgiving as dessert in his family.  I am a big fan myself, but I didn't' like that the recipe used cake mix.  So I found a recipe that is pretty similar but does not use cake mix and it includes cream cheese, the best ingredient ever.  All these needed were some fresh whipped cream, which I will make sure to have when I make these for Thanksgiving this year.

1-1/3 cups flour
3/4 cup  granulated sugar, divided
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup  (1-1/2 sticks) cold butter or margarine
1 cup old-fashioned or quick-cooking oats, uncooked
1/2 cup  chopped walnuts
1 pkg. (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
3   eggs
1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin, we are lucky to have lots of pumpkin from our CSA, so we used fresh puree!
1 Tbsp.  pumpkin pie spice, don't have so I used a mixture of ginger, allspice, nutmeg, cloves and cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons bourbon (optional)
a handful of butterscotch or chocolate chips for sprinkling on top (optional)
HEAT oven to 350°F. Line 13×9-inch pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides; grease foil. Mix flour, 1/4 granulated sugar and brown sugar in medium bowl; cut in butter with pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in oats and nuts.
RESERVE 1 cup oat mixture; press remaining onto bottom of prepared pan. Bake 15 min. Beat cream cheese, remaining sugar, eggs, vanilla, bourbon, pumpkin and spice with mixer until well blended. Pour over crust; sprinkle with reserved crumb mixture and a handful of butterscotch or chocolate chips (if desired).
BAKE 25 min.; cool 10 min. Use foil to transfer dessert from pan to wire rack; cool completely.
Can’t find pumpkin pie spice? Simply mix 1 tsp. each ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg and allspice, then use as directed.

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