Sweet Potato Pie

I’m hoping everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and has recovered from the food or the traveling.  Things are looking normal around here again- not having your patio chairs in your living room helps that along.  Hey, I did say we had fifteen people coming over, and I said we hadn’t picked out furniture yet, so anything was a nice alternative to sitting on the floor.  We also have our Christmas tree in the living room, and it goes a long way toward making this a home.  M and O have decided that Santa is going to love our tree, and remind me daily that I am a genius because I thought to put candy canes (which they have done a remarkable job of not eating) on the tree.

I’m going to start my roundup of things I made for Thanksgiving dinner with dessert.  We made two pies that, because of what I’m now calling the dessert debacle, didn’t get served to our guests.  I’m starting with the pie Lane made, because it marks a pretty big moment in our relationship.  We’ve had a lot of milestones this year, including moving in together, but nothing tops what happened right before Thanksgiving.  Are you sitting down?  I let Lane use the stand mixer.  Yes, my shiny, cobalt blue, KitchenAid stand mixer.  Lane has been circling around it ever since I plugged it in at its home on our coffee nook.  I suppose since I’ve needed his help tightening a screw on it once or twice, it was time I let him use it to make something.  Since it isn’t Thanksgiving for Lane without sweet potato pie, that’s what he made.  I made him a fresh crust because his old version used the refrigerated kind, but other than that, he followed Alton Brown’s recipe closely.  He did make one change- after steaming the sweet potatoes, he put them in the bowl of the stand mixer and let the stand mixer do the mashing.  It worked out really well.  Also, it bears mentioning that I made the pie crust using the stand mixer.  As much as I love making pie crust in the food processor, I’m pretty sure making it in the stand mixer with the paddle attachment is the way I’m going to do it from now on.  The ingredients came together quickly and uniformly, and I didn’t have all of the food processor parts to wash afterwards.  The recipe does make for a fantastic pie, the filling isn’t overly sweet and the toasted pecans add a nice crunch to the overall texture.  M and Lane have been working on this pie for a few days now, so it’s worth noting that if it’s covered and refrigerated, it holds up really well for at least a few days in the fridge.

Sweet Potato Pie

Ingredients:

for the filling and topping:

  • 1 pound 3 ounces sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 1/4 C. plain yogurt
  • 3/4 C. packed, dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 5 egg yolks
  • Salt
  • 1 C. chopped pecans, toasted
  • 1 Tbsp. maple syrup

for the crust:

  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 8 tbsp. cold, unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 3 tbsp. very cold water

Directions:

To make the crust, combine the flour, sugar and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.

Mix for a few seconds to blend then add in the butter pieces and mix on medium-low speed to cut the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse sand and the largest butter pieces are not much bigger than peas.

Mix in the cold water a little at a time (I use 1-2 tsp. per addition) on low-speed just until the dough comes together.

Shape the dough into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

Roll out the dough on a lightly floured work surface into a circle 1-2 inches in diameter larger than your pie plate.

Carefully move the pie crust to the pie plate, trim the excess using scissors, and pinch the edges.

Set aside until ready to fill.

To make the pie filling,  put the cubed potatoes into a steamer basket and place the steamer basket into a large pot of simmering water (water should be no closer than 2 inches from the bottom of the steamer basket).

Allow the potatoes to steam for 20 minutes or until the potatoes are fork tender.

Mash with potato masher (or place into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix on low-speed until the potatoes are mashed) and set aside.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Place sweet potatoes in the bowl of a stand mixer (if they aren’t there already) and beat with the paddle attachment.

Add the yogurt, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, yolks, and salt, to taste, and beat until well combined.

Pour the batter into the pie crust and place the pie onto a sheet pan.

Sprinkle pecans evenly over the top of the pie and drizzle with maple syrup.

Bake for 50 to 55 minutes or until the custard reaches 165 to 180 degrees.

Remove from oven and cool.

Keep refrigerated after cooling.

Makes 1 9- inch pie (8-12 servings, depending on size of slice).

Source: Crust, Annie’s Eats originally from Williams Sonoma; filling Alton Brown

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