StreamingGourmet – The Blog


Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake

Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake

Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake

It’s day 15 of 31 days of pumpkin. I can’t believe I’m halfway there. Today’s recipe was such a joy to make. I’ve never made cheesecake before and I was nervous at each step, but everything worked beautifully. I followed a recipe in a book that my sister gave me recently. Every once in awhile, she’ll see interesting cookbooks at a used bookstore and send them to me. I love it because there are always surprises. Like this book which is based on the fourth season of a Public Television Series I didn’t even know existed: Cooking Secrets of the CIA. The video doesn’t appear to be available anywhere, but the book is still available on Amazon:

The book was published in 1999 and was sponsored by Cuisinart. There is a set of pages at the back of the book featuring Cuisinart small appliances. The other thing about the book that I find fascinating is that the photography isn’t that great. The recipes are amazing, but with so much incredible food photography around these days, the lack of consistency in this book is a bit jarring.

Recently, I attended two food photography sessions at the BlogHerFood09 conference in San Francisco. One was given by Matt Armendariz of MattBites and Heidi Swanson of 101 Cookbooks and the other was given by Matt and Lara Ferroni of Still Life With… At one of them, Matt emphasized the importance of photographing food with your digital camera tethered to a computer so that you can see the images blown up while you’re shooting. I remember Matt saying, “If you’re looking through your viewfinder, you really don’t know what you’re getting.” I’ve been caught a few times thinking I had gotten the shot, only to load the pictures onto my computer and realize that the part of the frame I needed to be in focus, simply wasn’t. The connection between this talk and the CIA book is that this book would have been shot before digital cameras were widely used professionally. In other words, they couldn’t shoot tethered to anything. How did food photographers survive before digital cameras? They couldn’t know they had gotten the shot until the film was developed. I guess back then, photographers used Polaroids to test the lighting, but that just seems unimaginable now.

I’m an amateur photographer learning a little about food photography every day. Here are two lists of blogs that I find inspire and instruct:

My favorite food blogs for photography

101 Cookbooks
food & style
Not Without Salt
smitten kitchen

My favorite food blogs for photography tips

Becks & Posh
Simply Recipes
Still Life With…

What are your favorites blogs for food photography?

Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake

Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake

Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake
(adapted from Cooking at the C.I.A.)
Serves 10 to 12


1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
2 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp butter, melted
1 tsp egg white

Pumpkin Filling
1 1/2 lbs cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup + 1 Tbsp packed brown sugar
1 3/4 cup pumpkin puree (I used canned)
1/2 tsp ground ginger
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground mace
Pinch of salt
9 oz mascarpone cheese
2 eggs


Prepare the cake pan: Preheat the oven to 325˚F. Butter the sides and bottom of a 10-inch cake pan and line the bottom with a circle of parchment paper. (I used a nonstick cake pan with no parchment paper and it unmolded just fine).

Make the crust: In a bowl, blend the graham cracker crumbs and sugar evenly with a fork. Add the melted butter and egg white and mix well. Press the graham mixture into the prepared cake pan to make an even bottom crust. Bake the crust until it is lightly toasted and set, about 8 minutes. Cool slightly.

Make the pumpkin filling: In a bowl, combine the cream cheese and brown sugar and with a hand-held mixer, mix on low speed until ingredients are very smooth. Don’t overbeat the mixture or you will incorporate too much air into the cheesecake. Add the pumpkin purée, ginger, cinnamon, mace, and salt and mix gently for 3 to 4 minutes, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl often, until the mixture is evenly blended. Add the mascarpone and mix gently for 2 to 3 minutes, scraping the bowl. Add the eggs and mix for 2 to 3 minutes, scraping the bowl as necessary.

Bake the cheesecake: Pour the pumpkin filling over the crust. Place the filled cake pan in a deep baking dish and set them on the oven rack. Add enough boiling water to the pan so that it comes up three-fourths of the way up the sides of the cake pan. Bake the cake for an hour and fifteen minutes, or until the center of the cake is lightly set. Carefully remove the cheesecake from the baking pan and cool it to room temperature. For safety’s sake, remove the pan of water from the oven after it has cooled. Refrigerate the cake for at least 8 hours before unmolding.

Unmold the cake: Carefully lower the cake pan into a pan of hot water for a few seconds (I left mine in this bath for about one minutes and I also ran a butter knife around the perimeter of it, bearing down to the bottom so that the crust would also separate from the edge. Remember, I didn’t use any parchment paper). Invert the cake pan onto a plate, then invert the cake onto a serving plate.

Slice and serve the cake: Dust the cake with powdered sugar and garnish with chocolate shavings right before you are ready to serve it. (The powdered sugar does melt into the moist surface over time). To cut the cake, dip a sharp knife with a long, thin blade into very hot water. Wipe the blade dry and make a cut. For the neatest slices, repeat this process for each separate cut that is made.

Cake just out of the oven

Cake just out of the oven

Cake before dusting with sugar and garnishing with chocolate shavings

Cake before dusting with sugar and garnishing with chocolate shavings

Blog Widget by LinkWithin

Tags: , , , , ,

38 Responses to “Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake”

  1. October 15th, 2009 at 9:49 am

    lululu says:

    i’m also a big fan of smitten kitchen, simply recipes and tartelette.
    i think your photos are beautiful too! same as your cheesecake! i can totally tell how smooth it is!
    hvnt heard of ground mace b4, then i googled it, and it’s actually the dried covering of the nutmeg fruit seed. the flavour must be very intense!

  2. October 15th, 2009 at 11:28 am

    Mardi @eatlivetravelwrite says:

    Mmmmm – I had something similar this year for (Canadian) Thanksgiving. Would love to try this recipe. Thanks for the tips from BlogHer.

  3. October 15th, 2009 at 11:51 am

    Heather says:

    Wow! The cheesecake looks delicious. Really nice job on the photography too.
    I’ve enjoyed each one of your pumpkin recipes and I’m looking forward to the next. Happy Fall!

  4. October 15th, 2009 at 12:29 pm

    Cookin' Canuck says:

    I’m so impressed that this is your first cheesecake! It’s gorgeous and so are your photos. I have yet to work up to making one of my own.

  5. October 15th, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    Miriam/The Winter Guest says:

    The cheesecake looks really scrumptious, with such a beautiful color! Regarding photography, I’ve found a lot of help at Pioneer Woman, and also at VeganYumYum, whose style I love. And… I love this blog:

  6. October 15th, 2009 at 12:36 pm

    Miriam/The Winter Guest says:

    I forgot to mention Alessandro’s blog: Check it out, the photos are just great.

  7. October 15th, 2009 at 12:47 pm

    StreamingGourmet says:

    Thanks for the food photography recommendations. GlutenFreeDay is new to me so I’ll check it out. Foodografia is in my blogroll! Those photos are awesome. I almost put him in the list in the post…

  8. October 15th, 2009 at 4:37 pm

    Cynthia says:

    Thanks for the cookbook shoutout! Wish I were there to give this one a try.

  9. October 15th, 2009 at 5:53 pm

    Miranda says:

    The pictures are very VERY lovely. I love Pumpkin Cheesecake. The addition of mascarpone is incredible.

  10. October 16th, 2009 at 7:45 am

    chocolate shavings says:

    That cheesecake looks perfect!

  11. October 16th, 2009 at 8:49 am

    Judy says:

    beautiful! just beautiful!

    i was really excited when i saw your post on tastespotting. pumpkin and marscarpone all in one cheesecake- what a perfect combination!

    thanks for the recipe, i’m definitely going to give this one a try!

  12. October 16th, 2009 at 9:48 am

    Twitter Weekly Updates for Brown Egg Marketing | Brown Egg Marketing says:

    […] @StreaminGourmet: New blog post: with links to food photography inspiration #31daysofpumpkin […]

  13. October 16th, 2009 at 10:13 am

    Debi(Table Talk) says:

    Amazing texture in this cheesecake—really nice with the marscapone.

  14. October 16th, 2009 at 11:05 am

    Tessa says:

    I made pumpkin cheesecake last week but pumpkin mascarpone cheesecake sounds even better! I’m learning about food photography too, there is SO much to learn. Thanks for posting your favorite photography blogs.

  15. October 16th, 2009 at 2:19 pm

    Karly says:

    Oh my goodness, that looks and sounds amazing! I have a bunch of canned pumpking just waiting for the perfect recipe and I think I just found it!

  16. October 16th, 2009 at 2:34 pm

    Amy (Sing For Your Supper) says:

    Oh my gosh, this looks amazing!!! Way to go on this being your first cheesecake…it’s just beautiful! Fantastic pictures, too!

  17. October 17th, 2009 at 6:20 am

    Cheryl says:

    Hi! Was reviewing a recipe on another site when I noticed an ad for the Foodbuzz TOP 9, and there was this beautiful cheesecake! Couldn’t resist as I am a fan of all things pumpkin AND all things mascarpone. I made my first mascarpone cheesecake a few weeks ago, and it was the best cheesecake I’ve ever tasted! The combination of these two wonders has got to be fantastic! Thank you so much for this recipe. I can’t wait to try it (I’m assuming the flavor is as wonderful as the texture!)
    As for great food photography, in addition to the aforementioned sites, and now YOURS (really beautiful cheesecake & equally beautiful photo of it :), I’d like to mention a blog site I only stumbled on last night: Her photography is incredible. I could almost taste the lemon tart just from looking at her shots.
    Thanks again for this exciting recipe! (And oh, BTW, I’m not much of a baker at all, yet have had great success with cheesecakes in recent months. They really aren’t so difficult, I find; you just have to make sure you don’t let them overcook or get too hot. Cooks Illustrated has some great advice regarding this, but obviously you’ve already mastered it with your first try!)

  18. October 17th, 2009 at 6:27 am

    Cheryl says:

    Me again! Forgot to mention where you can find the recipe for that delicious mascarpone cheesecake I mentioned. It’s a Gourmet Mag recipe, called simply Mascarpone Cheesecake, that I found on Epicurious. Enjoy!

  19. October 17th, 2009 at 12:31 pm

    Kevin says:

    That looks so creamy and good! What a great way to enjoy the pumpkins!

  20. October 17th, 2009 at 1:13 pm

    vrinda says:

    Yummy cake And Gorgeous click…

  21. October 17th, 2009 at 2:56 pm

    Claudia says:

    I am definitely making this – what a grand autumn dessert! The photos are enticing.

  22. October 18th, 2009 at 6:01 pm

    Kirsten says:

    Thank you thank you for posting so many wonderful pumpkin recipes! I could eat pumpkin everything 365 days a year…and I can’t wait to make this cheesecake for Thanksgiving! Thank you!

  23. October 20th, 2009 at 1:50 am

    Scrumptious Turtle Cheesecake | Last Minute Gift Ideas says:

    […] Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake | StreamingGourmet – The Blog […]

  24. October 24th, 2009 at 10:17 am

    Weekend Foodie Links: Pumpkin : Blisstree - Family, Health, Home and Lifestyles says:

    […] Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake at Streaming […]

  25. November 1st, 2009 at 10:06 pm

    Day of the Dead Recipe Inspiration From Our Halloween Recipes Twitter Marathon | Hugging the Coast says:

    […] 2:00AM Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake Recipe […]

  26. November 10th, 2009 at 1:35 am

    Sweet Potato-Stuffed Apples | StreamingGourmet - The Blog says:

    […] used copies are available on Amazon. You may remember that during 31 Days of Pumpkin, I cooked a Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake from this book. Well a quick scan for apples yielded this whimsical […]

  27. November 23rd, 2009 at 9:39 am

    Adelina says:


  28. November 23rd, 2009 at 11:25 am

    Arjun Jayaraman says:

    This looks really great. Is two eggs really enough for a 10 inch cheesecake? Looking at the great AB recipe:

    Does the fat from the mascarpone cancel out the need for additional yolks?

  29. November 23rd, 2009 at 2:51 pm

    StreamingGourmet says:

    The 2 eggs definitely were enough. The consistency was perfectly creamy. You must be right that the fat in the mascarpone cheese provides what’s needed.

  30. November 27th, 2009 at 10:27 am

    Kirsten says:

    I made this for our Thanksgiving feast! All of the other desserts got ignored because this one was soooo good! Thank you! I love your blog!

  31. March 17th, 2010 at 10:00 am

    Richie | Vulcan Catering says:

    Who could have thought that pumpkin cheesecake would be one of the pumpkin recipes. My word, I am turning into a proper pumpkin convert. I am a changed person!

  32. July 14th, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    Natalie says:

    I have never heard of a pumpkin cheesecake before but that looks great. I will have to make this sometime.

  33. November 22nd, 2010 at 4:39 pm

    | Slice of Feist says:

    […] Mascarpone Cheesecake adapted from Streaming Gourmet […]

  34. December 28th, 2010 at 5:53 am

    Lisa Leong says:


    Wow this cake look truly delicious. I am planning to bake it this weekend.

    Any one know how to convert this recipe to
    7 inches round cake tin

    Thanks in advance.



  35. August 15th, 2011 at 9:29 am

    Eftychia says:

    What a delicious cheesecake! Very nice recipe! Thanks for sharing.

  36. November 11th, 2013 at 6:51 am

    Pumpkin Pie Fudge | The Texan New Yorker says:

    […] Pie Whipped Cream from Juanita’s Cocina Baked Pumpkin Spice Donuts from See Aimee Cook Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake from Streaming Gourmet Cranberry Upside Down Cake from Smitten Kitchen Pecan Cobbler from The […]

  37. December 1st, 2014 at 2:14 pm

    Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake | Sarah 'n Spice says:

    […] Slice and serve the cake: Dust the cake with powdered sugar and garnish with chocolate shavings right before you are ready to serve it. (The powdered sugar does melt into the moist surface over time). To cut the cake, dip a sharp knife with a long, thin blade into very hot water. Wipe the blade dry and make a cut. For the neatest slices, repeat this process for each separate cut that is made. Recipe and Photo Courtesy of Streaming Gourmet Blog […]

  38. December 4th, 2014 at 12:37 pm

    Pumpkin Mascarpone Cheesecake says:

    […] Source […]

Leave a Reply