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Three Cheers for Pumpkins!

November 23, 2005
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Everything's coming up pumpkin at this time of year!

Here are some easy dessert ideas for the season that will no doubt have folks asking for more. Because they're all dairy, save these for after Turkey Day, or eat with some of the leftover veggie sides.

(Of course, there are always those who prefer dessert first!)

Double-Layer Pumpkin Pie
[Dairy]

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 Tbsp. milk
1 Tbsp. sugar
1 tub (8 oz.) whipped dairy topping, thawed, divided
1 graham-cracker pie crust (6 oz.)
1 cup milk
1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin
2 packages (4-serving size each) vanilla-flavor instant pudding and pie filling
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. ground cloves

Mix cream cheese, milk and the sugar in large bowl with wire whisk until well-blended.

Gently stir in half of the whipped topping. Spread onto bottom of crust.

Pour 1 cup of milk into large bowl. Add pumpkin, dry pudding mixes and spices.

Beat with wire whisk for 2 minutes, or until well-blended. (Mixture will be thick.) Spread over cream-cheese layer.

Refrigerate for 4 hours or until set.

Top with remaining whipped topping just before serving.

Serves 8.

Pumpkin-Bread Pudding With Caramel Sauce
[Dairy]

12 slices cinnamon-raisin bread, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 8 cups)
4 eggs
1 cup milk
1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin
1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup pecan pieces
1 bottle (20.6 oz.) of caramel topping, heated as directed on label

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place bread cubes in greased 13x9-inch baking dish.

Beat together the eggs, milk, pumpkin, brown sugar and vanilla with wire whisk until well-blended. Pour evenly over bread; sprinkle with pecans.

Bake for 45 minutes, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Serve topped with warm caramel topping.

Makes 16 (one-half cup) servings.

Pumpkin Spice Roll
[Dairy]

3/4 cup plus 2 Tbsps. powdered sugar, divided
3/4 cup flour
11/2 tsp. pumpkin-pie spice
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
3 eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup canned pumpkin
1 cup chopped walnuts
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
11/2 cups French Vanilla dairy whipped topping, thawed

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Grease 15x10x1-inch baking pan. Line with wax paper, then grease and flour the wax paper. Sprinkle a clean towel with one-quarter cup of the powdered sugar.

Mix flour, spice, baking powder and salt; set aside.

Beat eggs and sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on high speed until thickened. Add the pumpkin; mix well. Add flour mixture; beat just until blended.

Spread evenly into prepared pan; sprinkle with walnuts.

Bake for 15 minutes, or until top of cake springs back when touched.

Immediately invert cake onto towel; remove pan. Carefully peel off paper. Starting at one of the short sides, roll up cake and towel together. Cool completely on a wire rack.

Beat cream cheese and one-half cup of the powdered sugar in medium bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until well-blended. Add whipped topping; mix well.

Carefully unroll cake; remove towel. Spread cream-cheese mixture over cake. Reroll cake; wrap in plastic wrap.

Refrigerate at least 1 hour, or until ready to serve.

Sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of powdered sugar just before serving.

Serves 10.

Pumpkin-Pie Bars
[Dairy]

11/3 cups flour
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
3/4 cup granulated sugar, divided
3/4 cup cold butter or margarine
1 cup old-fashioned or quick-cooking oats, uncooked
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
3 eggs
1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin
1 Tbsp. pumpkin-pie spice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Line a 13x9-inch baking pan with foil; grease foil lining.

Mix flour, brown sugar and one-quarter cup of the granulated sugar in medium bowl.

Cut in butter or margarine with pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in oats and pecans. Reserve 1 cup of the oat mixture; press remaining mixture onto bottom of pan.

Bake 15 minutes.

Beat together cream cheese, remaining one-half cup sugar, eggs, pumpkin and pumpkin-pie spice in small bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until well-blended. Pour over crust; sprinkle with reserved crumb mixture.

Bake for 25 minutes.

Lift from pan, using foil handles; cool completely.

Cut into 24 bars.

Store leftover bars in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator.

Makes 24 bars.

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