I am one of those obnoxious people who begins to celebrate Christmas at the first cool day after summer. I've been listening to the Holiday Stations on Pandora since September. I have a little Santa Bear ornament handing on my dresser knob all year long. So I get it, December is for Christmas.
Layered Pumpkin Cheesecake
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 (9 inch) prepared graham cracker crust
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 pinch ground cloves
1 pinch ground nutmeg
1/2 cup frozen whipped topping, thawed
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Blend in eggs one at a time. Remove 1.5 cup of batter and spread into bottom of crust; set aside.
2. Add pumpkin, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg to the remaining batter and stir gently until well blended. Carefully spread over the batter in the crust.
3. Bake in preheated oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until center is almost set. Allow to cool, then refrigerate for 3 hours or overnight. Cover with whipped topping before serving.
**A nice tip to save time -- use pumpkin pie filling instead of plain canned pumpkin with all the flavor and none of the work!