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Maple Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars

Remember the joys of early air travel?  You know, those days where they showed you a movie that you could hear without having to pay for ear buds,  stowed your luggage without a fee and actually fed you a free meal on any flight that was longer than two hours?   I’ll admit, the food wasn’t exactly fine dining, but depending on the airline, it wasn’t bad.  I remember flying to Rome on Alitalia many years ago and being served a pretty darn tasty veal cannelloni and a nice Pinot Grigio to wash it down with too.  Oh, yeah. Those were the days…

Now, all you get for free is a plastic cup filled with watered down soda or juice, and a choice of peanuts or cookies.  Seriously!  Have you seen those tiny packets of peanuts?  They’re miniscule!  The cookies are a much better bet.  At least you get two full-sized cookies.  And, they’re really, really good cookies too.  In fact, those cookies have become so popular, that the company that makes them now imports them all over the world – including my very own local supermarket. 

Biscoff Cookies [1] are made by  Belgium-based Lotus Bakeries.  They are crispy, crunchy little spiced cookies, very similar to gingersnaps.   And, I’m telling you people, they are addictive.  They also make a very nice piecrust, which is where I was going with this story.

Now that we’re firmly entrenched in Autumn, I was looking to make something with pumpkin – maybe a pie or a cheesecake.  Since I had several boxes of cookies lying around, I figured that I could use some of them to make the crust.   I ended up deciding on Maple Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars with a Biscoff cookie crust.

The recipe for these bars is super easy and virtually foolproof.   I essentially took a basic pumpkin pie recipe and tweaked it by adding cream cheese and maple syrup to the filling, and of course, by using my Biscoff cookies for the crust.  I also saved a little time and minimized the clean up by mixing up both the crust and filling in my food processor.  Who wants to wash a bunch of extra dirty bowls?

I loved, loved, loved these!  The bar format worked out great.  I could cut them into any sized squares I wanted and decorate each square individually.  They were also neater and easier to eat than a pie or cheesecake because you didn’t really need a fork.  And, the taste?  My, oh my, did these taste amazing!  They were like a silky, smooth pumpkin cheesecake laced with spice and a hint of maple.  Topped with a splotch of whipped cream and candy corn, these bars are a perfect little Halloween treat!