Pumpkin-Amaretto Cheesecake

This is a spirited version of an old fashioned favorite. It is sinfully rich. However, an occasional piece of cheesecake can fit into a well balanced diet. Moderation is the key. Bake and refrigerate this cheesecake a day ahead for best results.

11 whole graham crackers, crushed (about 1-1/2 cups crumbs)
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup unsalted butter or margarine, melted
2 eight-ounce packages reduced fat or fat-free cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup packed light brown sugar
2 cups fresh pumpkin puree or 1 16 ounce can solid pack pumpkin
2 egg yolks and 4 egg whites
1-1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons: whipping cream and Amaretto
Whipped cream, optional

Preheat oven to 325°F.

In a 9-inch springform pan, mix graham cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter.

Using your clean fingers, press the mixture evenly onto the bottom and sides of the pan.

Bake 8 minutes. Remove from oven and cool.

In a large bowl using electric mixer (or place directly in a food processor) whip cream cheese until smooth. Stir in brown sugar; blend until thoroughly mixed.

Add pumpkin and add egg yolks one at a time, blending after each addition until smooth.

Add 1/2 the egg whites at a time, blending well after each addition.

Add cinnamon, nutmeg, flour, Amaretto and whipping cream, stir to blend.

Pour mixture into prepared crust. Set springform pan in a large roasting pan and fill with 1/2 inch tap water. Bake 1 hour, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.

Remove from oven, chill 6 to 8 hours (or overnight) in the refrigerator. To serve, top with whipped cream if desired.

Makes 10 servings