Saturday, November 21, 2009

Southern Sweet Potato Pie

A classic southern pie made with spiced fresh sweet potatoes, topped with toasted pecans and drizzled with syrup. 
  A classic southern pie made with spiced fresh sweet potatoes, topped with toasted pecans and drizzled with syrup.

Southern Sweet Potato Pie

Southern Sweet Potato Pie was one of three pies that nearly always graced our holiday tables growing up - along with pecan, and pumpkin - though I seem to recall that me and Mama were the only two who truly indulged in the sweet potato pie.

Somewhat likened to pumpkin pie, and certainly seasoned similarly, they really are different from one another, and if you put the two side by side, I'd be able to identify which is which, as easy as I can tell if it's homemade or made from a canned sweet potato pie filling.

Not that there's a thing wrong with whipping up a pie using canned pie filling, but like homemade pimento cheese versus a commercial pimento cheese product, you can usually spot homemade.

Sweet potato pie is certainly a southern favorite and super easy to throw together though, so why not make a homemade pie filling instead?

Fresh whole sweet potatoes are best - it'll probably take about 2 large ones - but frozen already chopped up sweet potatoes will also work or use an equivalent amount of canned or mashed pure sweet potatoes.

Just don't use the sweet potato pie filling - at least not for this recipe.

Even though sweet potato pie might be more recognized as a holiday regular, it's pretty much welcome anytime, so if you have a family reunion, potluck, church supper or other gathering coming up, double this recipe and bring a couple of pies and see how quickly they disappear.

Here's how I like to make this delectable southern favorite.

Peel, dice and cook the sweet potatoes and let cool slightly.  Add them to the bowl of your food processor and toss in the brown sugar, egg yolks, half and half, vanilla, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and butter. Process until smooth. You can also do this in a blender, with a mixer or by hand.

Add the egg whites and cream of tartar to a mixing bowl and whip until foamy.  Sprinkle in 1 tablespoon of sugar and continue whipping until whites are stiff. They are ready when you can turn the bowl upside down without the whites sliding out.

Add the pureed sweet potato mixture to the whipped egg whites and gently fold together until blended. Don't whip it vigorously or you will break down the whipped whites.

Flute the edges of the pie crust and pour the filling in.

Sprinkle the top of the pie with the toasted pecans and drizzle with a bit of cane, sorghum or maple syrup.

Bake at 350 for about 45 minutes or until center is set. Enjoy!

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Posted by on November 21, 2009

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