I found myself dreaming about sweet potato pie the other day… It’s a natural progression for me – for most of the season a particular veggie is served for dinner, but toward the end of the season that particular veggie might make the heroic transition to dessert!
This is a privilege reserved for only the most prolific among them. And sweet potatoes are prolific in Texas! I get a nice little bag of them every week in my box from the farm.
I have also been toying with 2 big packages of new crop pecans. Also prolific in Texas, they sit ready to be toasted and chopped and sprinkled…
The topper is my current unfulfilled craving for gingerbread and ginger cookies! Alas, I have no crystallized ginger in the house until I make some, so I succumbed to a box of thin gingersnaps made by a bakery here in town.
You see where I’m headed… Gingersnap crust with those crispy cookies, dreamy sweet potato filling spiced up with brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg, and finally, toasted pecans over it all! Oh, and a drizzle of real maple syrup!
Some people say that sweet potatoes make a better pie than pumpkin… I think each has each merits, but I will venture to say I find it a darn sight easier to handle sweet potatoes than pumpkins. Which might mean that I make pie a little more often…you will have to judge for urself!
1 pound, 3 ounces sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 ¼ cups sour cream
¾ cup brown sugar
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
5 egg yolks
For the Crust:
2 cups crushed gingersnaps (Use the thin crispy kind)
6 tablespoons butter, melted
¼ cup sugar
For the Topping:
1 cup pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
Put cubed sweet potatoes into a steamer basket and place in a large pot of simmering water that is no closer than 2 inches from the bottom of the basket. Allow to steam for 15-20 minutes until fork tender. Mash with a potato masher and set aside. (If you do this the day before the pie comes together rather quickly!)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Butter an 8 inch springform pan. Mix the crust ingredients together and press them into the bottom of the pan and about 1 inch up the sides. Bake until set, and color has turned a bit darker, 10-12 minutes.
Put sweet potatoes in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat until mostly smooth, about 1 minute.
Add sour cream, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and egg yolks. Beat until well combined, about 2 minutes.
Pour batter into prepared crust, filling to just barely below the edge of the crust. Place onto a sturdy sheet pan.
Sprinkle chopped pecans on top. Drizzle with maple syrup.
Bake for 50-55 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 165 to 180 degrees on an instant read thermometer. (The thermometer test is helpful, because the filling will still seem a little wiggly even though the top is set.)
Cool completely on a wire rack, then release springform. Refrigerate.