Sweet Potato Pie
Note: Amber-tinted sorghum syrup is less bitter tasting than molasses. The author suggests using Muddy Pond sorghum syrup, available at muddypondsorghum.com. From “South,” by Sean Brock.
• Single pie crust pie dough for 10-inch deep dish pan (see below, or ready-made)
• 1 3/4 lb. large sweet potatoes, scrubbed and patted dry
• 1 c. heavy cream
• 3 eggs, lightly beaten
• 1 tbsp. sorghum syrup (see Note)
• 1/2 c. granulated sugar
• 1/2 c. packed light-brown sugar
• 2 1/2 tsp. flour, plus extra for work surface
• 3/4 tsp. ground ginger
• 1/4 tsp. ground cardamom
• 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
• 1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg
• 1/8 tsp. kosher salt
• Freshly whipped cream for topping
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Prick the sweet potatoes with fork and place in a baking dish and bake for 75 minutes, or until tender. Remove from oven and let cool completely. Lower oven temperature to 350 degrees.
Place dough on lightly floured work surface. If the dough has been refrigerated overnight, let it soften a bit at room temperature before rolling it out. Lightly flour your rolling pin and start rolling the dough gently from the center out. Do this a few times, then gently pick up the dough, rotate it a quarter-turn, and roll again. Continue to roll, rotating the dough and flouring the work surface and the dough as needed, until you have a 12-inch circle about 1/8 inch thick.
Loosely fold the dough into quarters and unfold it into a 10-inch deep-dish pie pan. Gently fit the bottom and up the sides of the pan; you should have an overhang of about 1/2 inch around the edges. Fold the excess under and crimp the edges of the dough around the rim. Refrigerate the pie crust while you make the filling.
Cut the sweet potatoes in half, scoop the flesh into a large bowl, and discard the skins. Mash the sweet potatoes with a potato masher or the back of a fork until smooth. You need 2 cups of mashed sweet potatoes for the filling.
In a bowl of an electric mixer on medium speed, combine 2 cups mashed sweet potatoes with cream, eggs and sorghum syrup; beat until blended.
In medium bowl, combine granulated sugar, light brown sugar, flour, ginger, cardamom, cloves, nutmeg and salt. With mixer speed on low, slowly add the dry ingredients to the sweet potato mixture and beat until completely incorporated.
Pour filling into pie crust and place pie on rimmed baking sheet. Bake until filling is set and no longer jiggles in the center when the pan is gently shaken, about 1 hour, rotating the pan halfway through baking. Remove pie from oven, transfer to wire rack and cool to room temperature. Slice pie into 8 wedges, garnish with freshly whipped cream and serve. Cover any leftovers and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Remove from refrigerator 30 minutes before serving.
Flaky Pie Crust
Makes enough for 1 single crust 9-inch pie or 10-inch deep-dish pie.
Note: This dough must be prepared in advance. From “South,” by Sean Brock.
• 1 1/4 c. flour, plus extra for work surface
• 1 tsp. kosher salt
• 10 tbsp. (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, diced and refrigerated
• 1/4 c. ice water
In a medium bowl, combine flour and salt. Add the butter and, using your fingers, cut the butter into the flour mixture until the pieces are about the size of small peas. Drizzle in the ice water, mixing it in with your hands until the dough just comes together.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and gather it into a ball. You should still see pieces of butter, and you want to work quickly to keep the butter cold.
Flatten the dough into a disk about 1 inch thick, wrap in plastic wrap, and let rest in the refrigerator at least 1 hour or up to overnight before using. Prepare filling and continue with recipe.