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whiskey sweet potato pie

It seems that every year, when the leaves begin to change colors and drift to the ground only to crunch under our boots, people become obsessed–I mean, really obsessed–with pumpkin. And I just don’t get it. Don’t get me wrong, I like pumpkin a lot. I relish that day each year when Starbucks brings their devilishly good pumpkin spice lattes back, and I am more than happy to eat a pumpkin muffin or five two any day of the week. But by the time November rolls around each year, I’m on pumpkin overload. So amid a flurry of pumpkin cheesecake brownies, pumpkin risottos, and pumpkin soups, I somehow found myself thinking about. . .you guessed it (or maybe not). Sweet potatoes. ┬áRecently, a friend of mine suggested that I jazz up a baked sweet potato with a dash of whiskey. Never one to ignore new ways to put whiskey in food, I tried it–and I may never eat sweet potatoes the old way again. I immediately knew I had to introduce my new loves, whiskey and sweet potatoes, to an old flame–pie. And folks, they got along famously. Meet whiskey sweet potato pie.

And don’t worry about the cream and the butter in this pie! Did you know that one sweet potato has enough beta-carotene as 23 cups of broccoli? Or that it’s a great source of vitamin C, potassium, and fiber? On top of that, recent studies have shown that eating at least 3-5 grams of fat with sweet potatoes significantly increases your body’s ability to absorb all that beta-carotene? Yep, this pie is good for you. (Sort of.)

whiskey sweet potato pie:

pastry:

  • 2-1/4 c. flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. sugar
  • 1-1/3 sticks butter, chilled and diced
  • 4 tbs. shortening, chilled
  • scant 1/2 c. ice water

Mix dry ingredients in a bowl. Add in the fats and, with your fingertips only, blend the fats into the flour until the mixture resembles oatmeal. Add in ice water all at once and blend using one hand in smooth cupping motions. Turn the pastry into a pie dish and press into a smooth layer. Trim the edges neatly with a spoon and place in the refrigerator for half an hour. (I had enough left to make a few maple leaves out of the extra dough.)

filling:

  • 4 medium-sized sweet potatoes
  • 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp. ginger
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • Dash nutmeg
  • 1/4 c. heavy cream
  • 1/2 c. whole milk
  • 3 tbs. whiskey (I’m a Jack Daniels girl myself)
  • 1/4 c. chopped pecans

Wash and lightly oil the sweet potatoes. Place them on a baking sheet and bake at 450┬░ F until easily pierced with a knife, about 45 minutes. Let cool and remove the skins. Beat the skinned sweet potatoes in a bowl with a hand-held mixer until no longer chunky. Blend in brown sugar and eggs until smooth. Add in ginger, vanilla, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg and blend. Slowly add in the cream, milk, and whiskey, beating as you go. Pour the filling into the prepared pie shell and bake at 350┬░ F for 40-45 minutes, or until edges are set but center still trembles when shaken gently. Toast the pecans on a baking sheet for about 6 minutes. Watch them carefully! There’s nothing more depressing than a burnt pecan. (Well, perhaps there is, but burnt pecans are up there.) Sprinkle the toasted pecans on the top of the pie. Let cool completely (I mean it–don’t be hasty!) and serve.

This pie is amazing with a strong cup of afternoon coffee.

xoxo

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