Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Sweet Potato Pie
It's almost Thanksgiving! In my family this means that we must have sweet potato pie. My mother never liked pumpkin pie, but we always had it's close relative: sweet potato pie.
There are many different schools of thought on sweet potato pie. Some people like their pie spicy (with lots of cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg). Others, like my grandmother, can't stand nutmeg. Some people add lots of ingredients to create a custard-like pie. Some people add a layer of cream cheese to put a surprise in the middle of their pie. My mom says my grandfather used to stretch five sweet potatoes into 20 pies because they couldn't afford to have a thick, hearty pie. Well, here's my take on sweet potato pie: I like mine full of potato (and little else), thick, very lightly spiced, smooth-textured, and with a hint of lemon. I never make less than four pies at a time. Tonight I made five: one for mom's house, one for grandmom, two for my in-laws (we'll be with them on Thanksgiving), and one for my hubby and I to enjoy at home. We've already cut ours, even though it was too hot to eat and completely fell apart. It was still good.
One bite of that pie and we both knew: time to break out the Christmas decorations, the holidays are here!
Sweet Potato Pie
4 lbs. sweet potatoes (about 8 large)
1 c. evaporated milk
1/3 c. butter
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 c. sugar
1 t. lemon flavoring
1 t. vanilla flavoring
1 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. nutmeg
1 egg, beaten
2 frozen deep dish pie crusts.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Prepare the sweet potatoes: Scrub potatoes and poke each potato several times with a fork. Place on microwave safe plate and cook on high for 12-14 minutes. (I can fit 5 potatoes at a time in my microwave.) Potatoes are done when they smell sweet and are soft to the touch. Let potatoes cool for at least 30 minutes. When potatoes are cool enough to handle, split them open and scoop out the cooked flesh. Set flesh aside.
Place milk and butter in a microwave-safe container. Microwave until milk is hot and butter is melted (about 2 minutes). Stir milk mixture and add it to the sweet potato mixture.
Add the vanilla and lemon flavorings to the sweet potato mixture.
Add the egg to the mixture. Mix for another 3 minutes.
Cover the edges of the pie crust with a thin strip of foil. Divide the sweet potato mixture between the two pie crusts.