Happy Thanksgiving from the Murray’s Family: Chef Amy’s Pumpkin Cheesecake

Chef-Amy-StonionisThanksgiving is one of our favorite times of year. What a perfect holiday for cooks and cheese lovers. The autumnal bounty! The no-holds-barred fall feasting! There is so much to be thankful for.

Perhaps you’ve already been mulling over the menu for weeks. There are pies to bake, potatoes to mash, turkeys to carve…and cheese plates to be assembled.

We’re busy sourcing and selling our favorite cheese, charcuterie, chocolate, jam and other good things, so that your holiday table can be a happy, tasty place. We’re also cooking and baking like crazy.

Do you know our awesome Executive Chef Amy Stonionis? You should. Amy grew up in a small town in Pennsylvania foraging, hunting, fishing, pickling, butchering and cooking her heart out. She’s lived in Brooklyn since 2007. When Amy is in the kitchen, you can rest assured you’re going to eat very, very well.

When Amy generously presented us with her light yet lusciously rich cheesecake,we gobbled it up in mere moments. It’s hard to control yourself when faced with this sweet, perfectly spiced goodness. Here’s the recipe. We hope you make it and share it. Happy Thanksgiving from our family to yours!

Amy’s Dreamy Pumpkin Cheesecake

5 cups diced pumpkin
1 tbsp olive oil
2 cups plus 1 tbsp sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
2½ lb cream cheese, softened
5 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup heavy cream

1/4 lb (8 tbsp) unsalted butter, melted
2 cups crushed graham crackers
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup light brown sugar


  1. To make the filling, cube and toss the pumpkin with olive oil, 1 tbsp sugar and cinnamon and roast in a 350 degree oven until tender, about 15-20 minutes.
  2. Combine cream cheese, the remaining sugar, eggs, vanilla and heavy cream in a stand mixer. Add roasted pumpkin and mix until pumpkin is fully integrated into the wet ingredients.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine melted butter with crushed graham crackers, cinnamon, and brown sugar.
  4. Pack crust in bottom of a springform pan and top with pumpkin filling.
  5. Bake at 275 degrees for 90 minutes.

The Real Deal with Nacho Cheeze

DCIM100MEDIAWe’ve all been there, standing in line at a Yankee’s game, shelling out $36 for 3.5 ounces of beer, when hunger pangs strike. You look around and assess your options. Emulsified pork-in-a-tube that’s been wading in tepid water since the summer of  `87. No thanks, I’ll pass.

Then it hits you: nachos! Boom, everything is good again. Your mouth waters as the concession stand worker pumps that sweet, sweet yellow nectar all over the tortilla chips. (If I could create a GIF of those magical 13 seconds, and have it eternally loop in my head, I would happily trade away my first born.)

But there’s that nagging question, the one we do everything we can to avoid: “Is that stuff REALLY cheese?” As quick is the thought appears, it’s deflected and stored in that special little corner of our brain that houses all of our poor food choice decisions. But the truth is, that nacho sauce that’s pumped out of a tub, or the stuff that comes spewing out of aerosol cans is cheese in the same sense that margarine is butter.

The mythological story (courtesy of Bloomberg) of nachos is a fellow down in Mexico named Ignacio “Nacho” Anaya needed to feed some American tourists. He reached for a wheel of Wisconsin cheddar, grated it on top of some tortillas, and plopped on some jalapenos. Today, many of the commercial available nacho cheese dips, spreads, and  goos might be flavored with cheddar, but contain such lovely emulsifying, hydrogenating, and stabilizing ingredients like modified tapioca starch, maltodextrin, and sodium stearoyl (YUM!). And while the FDA has many classifications of cheese manufactured in the United States, “nacho” seems to be left off the list. This means that nacho cheese can really be whatever you want it to be, and food companies can slap the word “nacho” on any old cheese flavored product they feel like. It’s marketing, y’all!

So now, approaching Super Bowl Sunday, we’re offering a recipe (adapted from The Foodie Affair) for some high-brow nachos for game day. Because while the goopy yellow “cheeze” has a soft spot in our hearts, we’re real cheese people, thankyouverymuch.

  1. In a medium saucepan, melt butter on medium heat. Add onion and sauté until fragrant and soft. Add garlic and blend into onions.
  2. Add flour to the onion mixture, stirring for about 2 minutes, until the mixture is thick. Add milk and begin adding cheese one cup at a time. Stir until melted and warm (approximately 5 minutes).

Macking with Murray’s: Murray’s Classic Mac & Cheese Recipe

Murray's Classic Mac

In our search for the elixir of life—AKA the perfect mac and cheese—we’ve tasted many-a recipe, and to paraphrase those Brooklyn bards, the Beastie Boys, we’ve been “working harder than ever, and you can call it macking.” At long last, our cheese alchemy has led us to THE ONE: a recipe we can’t keep secret, a dish so perfectly balanced and proportioned we must share it with you immediately!


Murray’s Classic Mac & Cheese

Serves 6-8


  • 8 ounces Fontina Val d’Aosta, grated
  • 8 ounces Spring Brook Reading, grated
  • 6 ounces Comte St. Antoine, grated
  • 2 ounces Cabot Cheddar, finely grated
  • 1 half onion, skin removed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 quart milk
  • 8 tablespoons butter
  • ½ clove garlic, grated
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 pound elbow macaroni
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme, minced
  • Zest of 1 lemon

1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Cut a slit into the halved onion and place a bay leaf in the slit. Stick the 2 cloves into the onion. Placing the milk in a saucepan over medium low heat and add the onion.

3. In a separate saucepan, make a Mornay sauce: melt 5 tablespoons butter and add the grated garlic. Slowly add the flour, whisking to combine, and cook for 2 minutes. Remove the onion from the warm milk and discard. Ladle in the warm milk to the butter and flour mixture (called a “roux”), whisking constantly, until combined and smooth. Add the nutmeg, black pepper, and cayenne pepper. Add 5 ounces Fontina Val d’Aosta and 5 ounces Spring Brook Reading. Then add 3 ounces Comte St. Antoine and whisk until well combined.

4. In a large pot, bring water to a boil and add salt. Add the macaroni and cook until al dente. Strain the macaroni and place into a bowl. Add the remaining grated cheeses and toss to combine.

5. Pour the Mornay sauce over the macaroni and toss to combine. In a small sauté pan, melt 3 tablespoons butter and add the Panko breadcrumbs, thyme, and lemon zest. Place the combined macaroni and cheese into a shallow baking dish and top with the breadcrumbs. Bake for 20 minutes and serve right away.


Not in the mood to cook? Check out our prepared mac and cheese, which comes in three insanely delicious flavors: classic plain, basil artichoke, and pulled pork. We’ll deliver dinner straight to your door…all you need to do it heat it in the oven and enjoy. Click here to shop Murray’s prepared mac and cheese.

Latke Grilled Cheese? Yes, Please!

Perfect Thanksgiving Side Dish: Stuffed Acorn Squash

Stuffed squash is a classic Fall dish that beautifully highlights the flavors of the season. The sweet and nutty qualities of Acorn squash mesh perfectly with the nuttiness found in Gruyère. Whether you’re whipping up a batch for a Thanksgiving feast, or simply looking for an easy fall dinner, this recipe will make you fall in love with Fall!squash_blog

No meat? No problem! Vegetarians will be thankful to learn that this dish is also super tasty without the sausage.


• 1 acorn squash, halved and de-seeded
• ¼ pound ground Italian sausage or diced cured sausage
• ½ onion, diced
• 1 teaspoon sage, minced
• ¼ cup breadcrumbs
• 1 egg, lightly beaten
• ½ cup Gruyère, grated
olive oil


1. Preheat oven to 350˚F.
2. Rub squash halves with 2 tablespoons olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place squash cut side down on an oven-safe baking sheet and roast for 20 to 30 minutes or until tender.
3. While squash is cooking, add 2 tablespoons olive oil to a sauté pan and brown onions over med-low heat. Add sausage and brown.
4. Drain fat from the onion-sausage mixture. Mix sage, breadcrumbs, and egg into the mixture.
5. Remove cooked squash from oven and fill with sausage mixture. Top with grated Gruyère cheese and bake for 10 mins until cheese is browned.
6. Have the best Thanksgiving ever!