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Piloncillo Sweet Potato Cheesecake with Pecans

Piloncillo Sweet Potato Cheesecake with Pecans
  • Prep 50 min
  • Total 6 hr 0 min
  • Ingredients 15
  • Servings 8

Baking during the holidays is a special time. It brings back memories of a house full of family laughing and reminiscing over old times. The piloncillo especially reminds me of the best-baked goods my mom would prepare. It’s a little different than regular brown sugar: it has a distinct flavor and aroma that takes me right back home. MORE + LESS -

Ingredients

2
sweet potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped
8
ounces of Mexican piloncillo (brown sugar)
2
inch piece of cinnamon stick
1
cup water
1/2
cup of butter, plus 4 tablespoons
2
cups graham cracker crumbs
1
tablespoon sugar
3
teaspoons cinnamon
2
cups cream cheese, softened
2
teaspoons vanilla
Zest from 1 orange
1/2
cup light brown sugar
Juice of 1 orange
1/2
teaspoon salt
2
cups chopped pecans

Directions

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  • 1
    Transfer the sweet potatoes to a glass bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Cook in the microwave for 7 to 9 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Let cool.
  • 2
    Combine the piloncillo, cinnamon stick and 1 cup of water. Heat to medium and cook for 15 minutes to make a syrup, cool for 20 minutes.
  • 3
    Add 1/2 cup of butter to a bowl and heat in microwave for 45 seconds or until melted. Add the graham cracker, 1 tablespoon sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Stir well and transfer to pan and press down and up the sides slightly to form the crust. Transfer to freezer.
  • 4
    Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  • 5
    With an electric mixer, blend the cream cheese, sweet potatoes, piloncillo syrup, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon vanilla and orange zest. Beat in the eggs one at a time until creamy. Pour into prepared pan, transfer to baking sheet and bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until center is firm.
  • 6
    In a pan, heat the 4 tablespoons of butter to medium. Add the 1/2 cup light brown sugar, orange juice, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon vanilla and 2 cups of pecans. Cook just until the sauce starts to caramelize and thicken, and remove from heat.
  • 7
    Remove cheesecake from oven and let cool for 20 minutes. Use a small knife to loosen the edges before releasing the spring. Let cool for another 40 minutes. Chill for 3 hours before serving. Warm pecan topping before adding to cheesecake.

Expert Tips

  • Baked cheesecakes are best when chilled overnight. Use a knife dipped in warm water for a clean slice.

Nutrition Information

No nutrition information available for this recipe
More About This Recipe
  • Baking during the holidays is a special time. It brings back memories of a house full of family laughing and reminiscing over old times. The piloncillo especially reminds me of the best-baked goods my mom would prepare. It’s a little different than regular brown sugar: it has a distinct flavor and aroma that takes me right back home.

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