Set out 24 ounces of cream cheese for several hours so it comes to room temperature. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Coarsely grind or chop ¾-1 ½ cup of macadamia nuts and spread them evenly on the bottom of a springform pan. If your springform pan can leak, put aluminum foil around the outside or set it on a cookie tray.
In a mixer, blend the softened cream cheese with 1 cup sugar just until smooth (don’t beat). This makes the cheesecake not too sweet. Use ½ cup sugar more if you like sweeter.
Add 1 cup of canned pumpkin pie mix
(or 1 cup of canned pumpkin puree plus 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg & 1/8 teaspoon allspice)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs
Mix until smooth (don’t beat–you don’t want it to have a lot of air in the mix or else the cheesecake will fall on cooling), scraping down the sides of the bowl a time or two.
Pour slowly into the pan so the macadamia nuts stay in place.
Place in oven for 50 minutes. Then turn oven off, and open the oven door a few inches.
Let the cheesecake slowly cool down in the oven for an hour or so, then set out.
When the cheesecake has cooled for an hour more, you can run a table knife around the edge and remove the springform top section.
1 cup water
2 cups granulated sugar
1 ½ cup lilikoi or passion fruit pulp
Juice of 1-2 lemons
Spin fruit in a blender to separate seeds. Strain out seeds. Leaves about 1 cup.
Boil water and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat for 5 minutes.
Add fruit and lemon juice and boil for a further 3 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Pour a ⅛” layer on the top of the cheesecake and let cool further.
Then refrigerate the cheesecake while still on the base. Move carefully, as glaze stays runny.
After chilled, cut into slices and carefully lift the pieces without losing the macadamia nuts on the bottom. Some people like a dollop of whipped cream on top. You can serve warm or cold.
Freezes and keeps well for several weeks. Serves 16.