An upgrade for traditional pumpkin pie...it has chocolate!
In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese and the 1/3 cup sugar; beat with an electric mixer on low to medium speed until smooth. Beat in the 1 egg; stir in the orange peel. Cover and chill for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and prepare the pie pastry. On a lightly floured surface, flatten the pastry ball slightly with your hands. Roll the dough into a circle about 13 inches in diameter. To transfer the pastry, wrap it around the rolling pin and unroll the pastry into a 9-10 inch deep pie plate. Ease pastry into the plate being careful not to stretch the pastry. Trim the pastry to 1/2 inch beyond the edge of the pie plate. fold under the extra pastry and crimp the edge high. (There is quite a bit of filling,) Do not prick the pastry.
For the pumpkin filling: In a large bowl, combine the pumpkin, the 3/4 cup sugar and the 2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice. Add the 3 eggs and beat lightly. Gradually beat in the half-and-half. Spread the cream cheese mixture into the pie plate. Carefully spoon the pumpkin filling over the cream cheese mixture. To prevent over-browning, cover the edge of the pie with foil. Bake for 25 minutes.
In a small bowl, combine the nuts, toffee pieces and the brown sugar. Remove foil from the pie and sprinkle the nut mixture over the top of the pie. Bake for 25-30 minutes more or until knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. cover and chill pie within 2 hours. If desired, garnish individual servings with hot fudge topping, whipped cream and dust with extra pumpkin pie spice. Makes 8-10 servings.
12 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp. finely grated orange peel
Pastry for a single-crust pie
1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling mix)
3/4 cup sugar
2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
3/4 cup half-and-half or light cream
3/4 cup broken walnuts or pecans
1/2 cup milk chocolate-covered toffee pieces or Chocolate-covered English toffee bars (Heath or Skor bars)
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
Hot fudge sauce
Whipped and sweetened cream
Pumpkin pie spice (optional)