Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cheesecake
1 cup canned pumpkin
1-1/2 cups HERSHEY’S MINI CHIPS Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1 cup sugar
CHOCOLATE LEAVES (recipe follows), optional
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
CHOCOLATE COOKIE CRUST (recipe follows)
3 packages (8 oz. each) cream cheese, softened
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
Prepare CHOCOLATE COOKIE CRUST. Increase oven temperature to 400°F.
Beat cream cheese, sugar, flour and pumpkin pie spice in large bowl until well blended. Add pumpkin and eggs; beat until well blended. Stir in small chocolate chips; pour batter into prepared crust. Bake 10 minutes.
Reduce oven temperature to 250°F; continue baking 60 minutes or until almost set. Remove from oven to wire rack. With knife, loosen cake from side of pan. Cool completely; remove side of pan. Refrigerate about 5 hours before serving. Prepare and garnish with CHOCOLATE LEAVES, if desired. Cover; refrigerate leftover cheesecake. 10 to 12 servings.
CHOCOLATE COOKIE CRUST: Heat oven to 350°F. Stir together 1 cup vanilla wafer crumbs (about 30 wafers), 1/4 cup HERSHEY’S Cocoa, 1/4 cup powdered sugar and 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) melted butter or margarine in medium bowl. Press mixture firmly onto bottom and 1/2-inch up side of 9-inch springform pan. Bake 8 minutes; cool slightly.
CHOCOLATE LEAVES: Thoroughly wash and dry several non-toxic leaves. Place 1/2 cup HERSHEY’S MINI CHIPS Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips in small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at HIGH (100%) 30 to 45 seconds or until smooth when stirred. With small, soft-bristled pastry brush, brush melted chocolate on backs of leaves. (Avoid getting chocolate on leaf front; removal may be difficult when chocolate hardens.) Place on wax paper-covered cookie sheet; refrigerate until very firm. Beginning at stem, carefully pull green leaves from chocolate leaves; refrigerate until ready to use.