Monday, December 22, 2014

Sweet Potato Buttermilk Pie

I beta tested sweet potato pies for Thanksgiving. One was just a sweet potato pie and the other was a sweet potato buttermilk pie. Originally, both of the pies were going to be featured at this years Thanksgiving, but they were too similar and one was clearly better.

I don't have anything against sweet potato pies, it's just that they're very dense. The benefit of the sweet potato buttermilk pie is that it's lighter and it combines the awesomeness of buttermilk custard with sweet potatoes.

An interesting thing is that when I first was interested in buttermilk pie back in 2007, there was only one recipe up on the internet that showed in the search and that was: Buttermilk Pie. An Unexpectedly Sweet Treat (NPR) Now, there are so many buttermilk pie recipes out there. I still always default on the NPR recipe. When I decided that a buttermilk-sweet potato pie sounded good, the only recipe that kept popping up was one by The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook. The reviews on it were not even largely mixed - just mostly average to low. I figured that I didn't want to waste the time and the gas so I would just wing it and half the NPR recipe while adding a cup of sweet potatoes to that. Given that both the sweet potato pie and buttermilk pie recipes I was using called for 1 cup of sugar, that stayed.

Christine's Sweet Potato Buttermilk Pie

1 - deep dish pie crust (I used store bought)

1 cup sugar

1 cup cooled mashed sweet potatoes (steamed or roasted - not boiled)

2 Tbsp all purpose flour

1/3 to 1/2 cup melted butter (I'm becoming more convinced that a lot of the butter in the recipe is not necessary)

2 eggs

3/4 cup buttermilk

1 tsp vanilla extract

(optional) 1/4 tsp orange zest chopped fine.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Once at 350 degrees, place the frozen pie crust in for 10 minutes. I found that when it's frozen, it doesn't bubble or pop up. Lazy, but it works. Clearly from the top picture, I don't care about the outside crust presentation. This is still a good recipe for filler.

Combine eggs with sugar, and flour. Add butter (make sure it's not hot) and mix, then add buttermilk and vanilla, then set aside.

Mash sweet potatoes. Add a little bit of the buttermilk mixture to the sweet potatoes and mix until smooth. Repeat until all the buttermilk is mixed in so that the resulting mixture is smooth. At this point, add in the orange zest if desired (lemon might work well also.) Orange zest can be very overpowering, so use sparingly.

Bake for 1 hour. Remove from oven and then allow to cool for another 2 hours.

The next things I want to try with this are: using lemon zest and using garnet sweet potatoes.

I can't give an honest assessment of the difference between roasted and steamed sweet potatoes because at that point I had been eating so much sweet potato pie that my subtlety taste buds were out the window.

Let me know how this works out for you! The reception to this pie was surprisingly good. I thought I'd have some extra to eat for myself but my classmates and family dominated this pie.

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