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- 1 1/3 cups all purpose flour
- 6 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 2 tablespoons chilled solid vegetable shortening, cut into small pieces
- 3 tablespoon (or more) ice water
- 2 large red-skinned sweet potatoes (yams; 1 3/4 pounds)
- 1 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 large egg white, beaten to blend
Mix flour, sugar, and salt in processor. Add butter and shortening; using on/off turns, cut in until mixture resembles coarse meal. Drizzle 3 tablespoons ice water over mixture. Process until moist clumps form, adding more ice water by teaspoonfuls if dry. Gather dough into ball; flatten into disk. Wrap in plastic; chill until firm, about 30 minutes.
Roll out dough on floured surface to 14-inch round. Transfer to 9-inch-diameter glass pie dish. Fold overhang under. Crimp edges decoratively. DO AHEAD Crust can be made 2 days ahead. Cover; chill.
Pierce potatoes with fork. Cook in microwave on high until tender, about 6 minutes per side. Cut open; cool completely. Scrape potato flesh into bowl; mash until smooth. Measure enough potato puree to equal 1 1/2 cups.
Position rack in bottom third of oven; preheat to 400°F. Place puree in large bowl. Whisk in brown sugar and next 6 ingredients. Brush crust with beaten egg white. Transfer filling to crust.
Bake pie until filling is puffed around edges and set in center, about 45 minutes. Transfer to rack; cool. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; refrigerate.
2 1/4 cups cooked mashed sweet potatoes
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup instant french vanilla pudding mix
3/4 cup evaporated milk
2 large eggs, room temperature
6 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 unbaked pie shell (9 inch size)
In a large bowl combine all ingredients and beat at medium speed until well blended. Spread evenly into unbaked pie shell.
Bake at 450 degrees F. for 10 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350 degrees F. and bake for 40 minutes longer or until set. Cool on wire rack.
If desired, garnish with whipped cream, raspberries and mint leaves.
Recipe Source: An Original Recipe Prepared Specifically for The North Carolina Sweet Potato Commission by Marianne Langan
What is the Purple Layer?
The purple layer is mashed Okinawan Sweet Potato. It a popular sweet potato grown locally in Hawaii. It made its way to the Hawaiian islands thanks to the Japanese. The sweet potato actually thrived in the islands due to its rich volcanic soil.
Sometimes people can get the Okinawan sweet potato mixed with Ube (pronounced ooh-bae). It’s totally understandable because they look and taste slightly the same. Ube is pretty much a purple yam that is popular in the Philippines and used quite commonly in desserts. The only difference is that Okinawan sweet potato grows underground like a potato while ube grows above ground on vines. Despite that one difference, it is totally fine to use the two ingredients interchangeably.
For the crust: Sift the flour and salt into a medium bowl. Add the shortening. Using a fork or a pastry blender, cut the shortening into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs with a few pea-sized bits. Stirring with the fork, gradually add enough of the water until the mixture clumps together (you may need more or less water). Gather up the dough and press into a thick disk. If desired, wrap the dough in wax paper and refrigerate for up to 1 hour.
On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the dough into a 13-inch circle about 1/8-inch thick. Fold the dough in half. Transfer to a 9-inch pie pan, and gently unfold the dough to fit into the pan. Using scissors or a sharp knife, trim the dough to a 1-inch overhang. Fold the dough under itself so the edge of the fold is flush with the edge of the pan. Flute the dough around the edge of the pan. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate while making the filling.
For the filling: Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the sweet potatoes and reduce the heat to medium. Cook until the sweet potatoes are tender when pierced with a knife, about 30 minutes. Drain and run under cold water until cool enough to handle. Peel the sweet potatoes and place in a medium bowl.
Mash with an electric mixer on medium speed until very smooth. Measure 3 cups mashed sweet potatoes, keeping any extra for another use, and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Uncover the pie shell and brush the interior with some of the melted butter. Sprinkle 1/4 cup of the brown sugar over the bottom of the pie shell. Bake until the pie dough is set and just beginning to brown, about 15 minutes. If the pie shell puffs, do not prick it.
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, using an electric mixer on low speed, mix the mashed sweet potatoes, the remaining melted butter and 1/2 cup brown sugar, the granulated sugar, eggs, half-and-half, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Spread into the partially baked pie shell, smoothing the top.
Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F. Bake until a knife inserted in the center of the filling comes out clean, about 1 ½ hours. Cool completely on a wire cake rack. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve with whipped cream.
Reprinted from "LaBelle Cuisine." Copyright © 1999 by Patti LaBelle with Laura B. Randolph. Published by Broadway Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.
Southern Sweet Potato Pie (w/ brown butter)
“Will you make me some black people food?” This was a question by my then 7-year-old niece Rayvn that still tickles me to this day! She is biracial and apparently that day she was needing her black people food fix.
She is 22 now and she still wants to know when I’m cooking something. Gotta love her! Apparently, she isn’t the only person requesting “black people food” because one of the top requests for the keywords “sweet potato pie” on google is “black folks sweet potato pie recipe”.
So yall want a black person’s sweet potato pie recipe huh? Ha! Too funny, but I think I might can help with that!
Let’s talk about this southern sweet potato pie right HERE! My grandmother makes a great sweet potato pie! And now that I think about…I don’t know too many people in my family who can’t make a decent sweet potato pie! I’ve had so many including this recipe that you guys seem to like so much.
However, NO sweet potato pie holds a candle to the sweet potato pie I use to have after church in Elberton, GA. I don’t know who use to make it but it was one of the first things I’d go to in the lunch line and I think I FINALLY figure out the secret ingredients.
I remember the pie tasting like it had nuts or maybe even some toffee in it but it was just as creamy and smooth as ever. The flavor was so deep & rich, sweet but yet somehow that fresh sweet potato flavor was still able to shine through.
What’s the secret? BROWN BUTTER and a splash of orange pineapple juice! Oh and roasting those sweet potatoes!!
Ok, so I’m pretty sure whoever made the pie many years ago at Holly Springs Church probably wasn’t browning butter or was she. Maybe she was using maple, toffee or maybe she really did put ground nuts in it, heck all I know is that this sweet potato pie tastes so much like hers, maybe even a lil better!
The texture is so fluffy and creamy! It just kinda melts right there on your tongue. And that flavor!! Dear Lordt be some lipo for me today because I had 2 1/2 pieces!! So ashamed of myself….ok I’m over it. Off to get more pie! : ) jk (but not really)
Brown butter has pretty much changed my sweet potato, pecan, and pumpkin pies life. It adds such a deep, nutty, slightly caramel-ish flavor! And yep, roasting sweet potatoes for sweet potato pie is pretty much the only way I roll these days. It brings out such a rustic, naturally sweet flavor.
Now let’s talk CRUST for a minute. Use my Buttery Deluxe Pie Crust recipe. Sorry if I’m being bossy but that’s what you need to use. It’s still hands down my favorite pie crust ever! A flavorful crust + A flavorful sweet potato pie….catch my drift here!! It’s an overload of good stuff for your mouth…you’re seriously standing close to the edge of marriage proposal territory. The best part is that it’s crazy easy to make so no excuses people!! “Make the crust Annie-Mae. ”
Even though brown butter is easy to make, I don’t make it all the time for my pies. Usually only for holidays or if someone is paying me to make them one. It’s just a little extra layer of flavor (and love) to add in if you have the time. So worth it though!
When I first made this pie last year, I was curious to see what my hubby thought of it. He is team Patti Labelle’s sweet potato pie all the way, but took one bite and gave me two thumbs up. He coined it the best homemade sweet potato pie he’s ever had (over my normal sweet potato pie) and “Patti Pie” still holds the place for the best store-bought pie in his book.
I guess I can live with that…not unless I decide to introduce my own line of desserts. Watch out, Patti! : )
3 Sweet Potato Pie Recipes By Black Cooks That You Need This Thanksgiving
One of the biggest food holidays of the year is almost here, and if you’re anything like us you can’t wait to chow down on delicious eats you’ve been dreaming of all year long. So what’s the one item on the Black Thanksgiving table that we can’t wait to get our hands on – sweet potato pie!
Now listen, not everyone in the family is worthy of whipping up this delectable dessert straight from the ancestors, so when it comes to who is going to be trusted to bring the pie for the big event, it needs to be serious business. If the lucky person up to bat this year happens to be you and you’re dreading big momma’s side-eye if you mess it up, you’re in luck.
We’ve rounded up three recipes by Black cooks (so you know the flavor will be real!) for sweet potato pie that will have tongues wagging at the Thanksgiving table, but in a good way. Good luck and let the ancestors be with you!
Photo Credit: Sweet Tea & Thyme
Photo Credit: Chef G. Garvin
Photo Credit: Broadway Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.
Sweet Potato Pie
Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the sweet potatoes on a rimming baking sheet. Bake until potatoes are tender to the point of a knife, 45 to 60 minutes.
Remove from the oven. Return the baking sheet to the oven and leave the oven on.
When cool enough to handle, peel the sweet potatoes and discard the skin. Place the peeled potatoes in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. With the mixer on medium-low speed, whip until smooth. Add the sugar, egg and butter and continue whipping on medium-low until well-combined. Add the milk, vanilla and salt and continue whipping on medium until smooth.
Pour the sweet potato mixture into the prepared pie crust.
Place directly on the baking sheet in the oven.
Bake until set, about 60 minutes. Remove to a rack to cool slightly before serving. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Per serving: 275 calories (percent of calories from fat, 32), 3 grams protein, 44 grams carbohydrates, 1 gram fiber, 10 grams fat (4 grams saturated), 35 milligrams cholesterol, 184 milligrams sodium.
Amount Per Serving
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Classic Sweet Potato Pie
Sometimes the old school recipes with simple classic flavors are the best. And that’s exactly what this Sweet Potato Pie is… simple, classic, and flavorful.
This Fall favorite is made with roasted sweet potatoes, butter, evaporated milk (the secret ingredient), brown sugar, and a blend of warm fall spices. It tastes pretty close to pumpkin pie, but with a bit of a milder flavor that I much prefer.
For me, using evaporated milk in this is a must. Some folks refer to it as Carnation milk or canned milk. Now this is not the same thing as sweetened condensed milk – which my grandmother still calls Eagle Brand milk. While they both are concentrated milks, sweetened condensed milk is sweetened- just as the name implies. Evaporated milk, on the other hand, is concentrated but no extra sugar is added.
Evaporated milk is denser and creamier than regular milk and it has a slightly caramelized flavor because of the high heat at which it is cooked.
Evaporated milk makes this pie super rich and creamy. That said, if you can’t get your hands on a can of evaporated milk, heavy cream will work as a substitute.
Now, my recipe calls for you to roast the sweet potatoes to get them cooked before they go into the pie filling. Many recipes, though, call for you to boil them. Either way will work just fine. I just think I prefer the flavor of them better when they’ve been roasted.
I love this pie topped with a heaping helping of whipped cream – or even Cool Whip, if that’s what I have on hand. There is no shame in my game and I will readily admit that I love me some Cool Whip – regardless of what’s on the ingredient label.
That said, my favorite thing to do with this Sweet Potato Pie is top it with a dollop of jarred marshmallow cream and just hit the top of that cream with a blow torch to get it toasted. Wooo, doggie, that’s some good stuff right there! Y’all enjoy!
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