My Yummy Local Life











{January 13, 2010}   My Sweet Potato Pie

I love sweet potatoes.  I know when you think of sweet potatoes your first thought is probably the “candied yam” casserole your mom makes every year at Thanksgiving that’s covered in marshmallows, right? Well here I am to tell the world (and my mom) that is probably my least favorite way to have a sweet potato. There are so many tastier and healthier options out there.  North Carolina is the number one producer of sweet potatoes in our country. Sweet potatoes are also one of the only vegetables that are always in season here in NC, so be forewarned: I use them a lot!

To introduce the sweet potato to this blog, I now present to you a from scratch, gluten-free sweet potato pie!

As of now in my searching, I have not found any sources of gluten-free flours that are locally produced. For the most part I buy Bob’s Red Mill brand because they have not been bought out by a macho industry, they don’t add unnecessary preservatives to their products and they strive to produce quality kosher and organic products.

I have also mentioned before that I try to use fair trade products when I can find them.  In this recipe I experimented with one of my newest finds: sucanat. Sucanat is a contraction for “Sugar Cane Natural” and is totally un-refined cane sugar.  If you don’t have this product, you can substitute brown sugar in the recipes that follow.

Both my sweet potatoes and my eggs that I use in this recipe come from Cane Creek Farms.  I am very grateful to Bobby, who has continued to keep a farmer’s market stand open at the North Raleigh Farmer’s Market once or twice a week even during some of the terrible weather we have had lately.  It seems like it always rains on the market days; either that or it is windy and cold.  As the market gets back into full swing in the spring and summer I have my favorite growers for certain vegetables, but for now this is my go-to guy for local produce.

Gluten Free Pie Crust:

Ingredients:

1/2 cup rice flour

1/2 cup sorghum flour

1 Tbsp tapioca flour/starch (you can substitute arrowroot or even cornstarch if needed)

1/4 tsp xanthan gum (or guar gum)

1 Tbsp sucanat (I would perhaps use a bit more next time, the dough could have been a bit sweeter)

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, cold

3-4 Tbsp water, cold

Method:

  1. Combine all the dry ingredients and mix together.
  2. Cut the butter into small pieces, work into the flour mixture (by hand) until the butter is evenly distributed.
  3. Add the cold water, mixing in about 1 Tbsp at a time until the dough just comes together.
  4. Put dough in refrigerator for 5-10 minutes.
  5. Dust a surface with a little extra flour (either rice or sorghum).
  6. Roll out the dough to about 1/4 inch thickness (the gluten-free dough will crack and break, but I still like to roll it out to give myself a head start in getting it even in the pie pan).
  7. Place pieces of dough into pie pan and pinch together to make an even crust.

Sweet Potato Pie Filling: (Adapted from Alton Brown’s recipe)

Ingredients:

Approx. 3 medium sweet potatoes, peeled, cubed (measures ~5 cups) (from Cane Creek Farm)

*Not all produce is good… use this:

not that:

1 1/4 cup yogurt, plain (I totally wanted o use my homemade yogurt, but as it turns out, that was an epic fail, so I used Greek Gods Yogurt instead)

3/4 cup sucanat (fair trade)

1/2 tsp cinnamon, ground (organic)

1/4 tsp nutmeg, freshly ground

5 egg yolks (Cane creek farm)

pinch salt

Method:

  1. Place the peeled, chopped sweet potatoes into a pot of water and bring to a boil.
  2. Boil potatoes until a fork goes through them without resistance (about 10 minutes).
  3. Drain and place into a large mixing bowl.
  4. Pre-heat oven to 350 F.
  5. Mash the sweet potatoes.
  6. Use an electric mixer to beat the potatoes until they are smooth.
  7. Add in all the remaining ingredients and again beat until smooth.
  8. Pour the filling into the pie crust so that it is even with the top of the crust. (I had filling left over…)
  9. Bake for 50-55 minutes (until a toothpick comes out clean).
  10. Let rest as long as possible before devouring the yumminess!

Enjoy the yumminess of a local sweet potato pie!

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