Friday, November 19, 2010

TF's Sweet Potato Praline Pie

Ingredients for sweet pecan pie crust:
1 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup finely ground pecans
1 T sugar
pinch salt
1 stick unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
2 T ice water, plus more if needed

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Ingredients for the filling:
1 1/2 to 2 pounds sweet potatoes, about 3 medium-sized
2 large eggs
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup pure sugar cane syrup (recommended: Steen's)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt

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Ingredients for praline topping:
3 T butter
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup pure sugar cane syrup (recommended: Steen's)
1 cup toasted pecans, lightly crushed
pinch salt

Preparing the pie crust:
Combine the flour, ground pecans, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Add the butter and rub the butter pieces between your fingertips and thumbs, or use a pastry blender, until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Pour in the ice water and work it in until the dough holds together, being careful not to overmix. Squeeze a small amount together; if it is too crumbly, add some more ice water, a little at a time. Shape it into a smooth ball, flatten into a disk, and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, and up to 2 days.

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Preparing the pie:
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Roll out the dough into a circle, about 12 to 13 inches in diameter. Gently press it into a 9-inch pie pan and crimp edges with your forefinger and thumb. Prick the bottom of the pie crust all over with the tines of a fork to keep it from puffing up in the oven. Refrigerate until well chilled, about 45 minutes.

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Preparing the pie filling:
Put the sweet potatoes on a baking sheet and bake in the oven until very tender, about 45 minutes. Turn the oven down to 350 degrees F and remove potatoes from oven; allow to cool slightly before scooping the flesh into a food processor. Puree until smooth, then add the eggs, cream, brown sugar, sugar syrup and vanilla extract. Pulse a couple of times to combine, then add the cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.

Put the pie pan on a rimmed baking sheet and pour in the filling. Bake until the center is set, about 40 minutes. Let cool completely, then transfer the pie to the refrigerator.

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Preparing the praline topping:
To make the praline topping, melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat and add the sugar, syrup, pecans and salt. Cook until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is smooth, about 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the stovetop and let cool for 5 minutes.

Remove the pie from the refrigerator and pour the praline topping over the cooled pie, spreading evenly with a spatula or by gently rolling the pie around at an angle so it hits the edges. Cool until topping has hardened, about 20 minutes. Serve.

Make 1 9-inch pie


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