To make the crust:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
an 8- by 8-inch square cake pan
and line with parchment.
In a food processor
, mix together the graham crackers, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt and butter. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and press it out in an even layer. Bake for about 12 minutes, until it starts to color. Let cool on a rack.
In a stand mixer
, beat the cream cheese
on medium speed with the paddle attachment for about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and mix for another 30 seconds. Add the brown sugar and mix for about 1 minute. Add the eggs
one at a time, scraping down the sides after each. Add the pumpkin
, sour cream
, vanilla and salt. Mix for 30 seconds.
Pour the cheesecake mixture onto the cooled crust. Place the cheesecake
in the oven on a cookie sheet that has about a 1/4-inch hot water in it. This will help the cheesecake bake evenly and have a silky texture. Turn the oven down to 325 degrees F and bake for about 1 hour or until it is just set in the middle. Remove the cake from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature, then refrigerate for at least 3 hours.
To make the almond crunch topping:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a cookie
sheet with parchment.
In a bowl mix together the almonds, sugar, salt, zest and egg white.
Spread the almond mixture onto the cookie sheet and bake for about 10 minutes. With a wooden spoon or spatula
, stir the almonds, so the edges don't get too much color. Bake for an additional 5 minutes or until golden brown. Let the crunch cool completely and then break into small pieces.
To serve the cheesecake:
Using a sharp, thin-bladed knife dipped in hot water, cut the cheesecake into 16 pieces.
Whip the heavy cream
with the confectioners' sugar and Amaretto until medium peaks.
Serve the cheesecake with the whipped cream
and almond crunch and I found these tasty figs
at the co-op.