The first time I made a pumpkin cheesecake pie, I freaked out when I took it out of the refrigerator on Thanksgiving and saw the surface covered in droplets of water. Now, I know how to carefully pat these droplets away with a paper towel before bringing my pie to the table. When it comes to pie, practice definitely makes perfect.

PUMPKIN CHEESECAKE PIE

For the crust:

25 gingersnap cookies (to yield about 1 1/3 cup crumbs)

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled

1 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon

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1/8 teaspoon salt

For the filling:

3/4 cup sugar

8 ounces cream cheese, softened

2 large eggs

1 cup canned pumpkin puree

1/4 cup heavy cream

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

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1/4 teaspoon salt

1. Make crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place cookies in workbowl of food processor; process till finely ground. Add butter, cinnamon and salt; process until crumbs are moist. Press mixture evenly over bottom of a 9-inch pie plate, all the way up the sides of pan, packing tightly with fingertips so it is even and compact. Bake crust until crisp, 6 to 8 minutes. Let cool on wire rack.

2. Make filling: Combine sugar and cream cheese in large bowl and beat with an electric mixer until fluffy and smooth, scraping down sides of bowl once or twice as necessary. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat until smooth. Add pumpkin, cream, flour, ginger, nutmeg and salt, and beat until smooth.

3. Scrape filling into cooled pie shell and bake until center is just set, 40 to 45 minutes.

4. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely, then refrigerate until chilled, at least 6 hours and up to 2 days, before serving.