This is a dessert that actually benefits from being refrigerated for a day or two before serving which I, unfortunately, did not do. The consistency, flavor, and firmness of the wafer crust are at their peak after a long chill. Bake the tart one to two days before Thanksgiving and you are all set for a delicious holiday dessert!
• 10 ounces cream cheese, softened
• 1/2 cup sugar
• 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
• 2 large eggs
• 1 16 ounce can pumpkin
• 2 tablespoons milk or light cream
• 1 tablespoon rum
• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 1 teaspoon vanilla
• 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
• 1/2 teaspoon allspice
• 1 teaspoon finely-shredded orange peel
• 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
• 1/2 cup heavy cream
• 2 heaping tablespoons confectioners' sugar
• 2 teaspoons rum, optional
• thin slices of candied ginger for decoration
1. In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar, and brown sugar; beat with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add the eggs all at once; beat on low speed just until combined. Do not over beat. Gently stir in the pumpkin, milk or cream, rum, cinnamon, vanilla, ginger, allspice, orange peel, and lemon juice.
2. PREHEAT OVEN to 375˚F. Slowly pour the pumpkin filling into the chocolate wafer tart shell. Loosely cover the edge of the crust with foil. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove foil. Bake for an additional 25 to 30 minutes more or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. The center should be slightly soft when tested. It will firm as it cools. Transfer the tart to a wire rack and cool completely. Cover and chill overnight.
3. Before serving, combine the heavy cream, confectioners' sugar, and rum in a chilled mixing bowl. Beat until soft peaks form. Serve the tart with whipped cream and slices of candied ginger, if desired.
CHOCOLATE WAFER CRUST (adapted recipe from Hungry Rabbit)
• 36 chocolate wafers (about 3 cups)
• 1/4 cup sugar
• 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1. PREHEAT OVEN to 350˚F.
2. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the chocolate wafers, sugar, and cinnamon. Pulse until fine crumbs. Add the melted butter and pulse until combined.
3. Press the crumbs onto the bottom and 1 1/2-inches up the sides of either a 9 1/2-inch ring mold, pie plate, or springform pan.
4. Bake the crust on the middle rack of the preheated oven for 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from oven.
TAKE a LOOK: