Dandelion Chandelier’s Luxury Dish is an occasional series featuring original recipes and their origin stories from our Luminaries, Fireflies, friends, families, and team of far-flung correspondents. They’re guaranteed to add sparkle to any menu.
This contribution is from Dauna Williams, a New York-based attorney, graduate of Brown and Harvard Law School, writer, and long-time family friend. We recently shared the holidays together, and spent some wonderful time in the kitchen cooking, laughing and talking. The topic of favorite kind of pie came up (as it so often does around the holidays). And you know how we here at Dandelion Chandelier feel about pie! We mentioned how much every generation on both sides of our family loves real, Southern, down-home, like-grandma-used-to-make sweet potato pie — actually, in our family, it’s just called “potato pie,” and everybody knows what you’re talking about. We mournfully commented on how surprisingly hard sweet potato pie is to come by in New York City — everyone up here seems to opt for pumpkin — and she immediately offered to bake one. In the end, she baked two, and they disappeared so quickly that she generously agreed to share her recipe. We think you’ll love it (and as you’ll see, you can cheat the crust and use a pre-made one — this is about the filling, not the crust). And while the recipe may state otherwise, in our opinion, the marshmallows are totally not optional. They’re required.
Aunt Dauna’s Sweet Potato Pie Recipe
Yield: Two Pies
6-8 small/medium sized sweet potatoes
2 regular dish pie crusts (or 2 deep-dish, but then use 7-8 medium sized potatoes)
1 stick of butter
3/4 can of sweet condensed milk
1/3 cup of sugar (or 1/4 if you prefer a less sweet pie)
1 tsp of vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
One bag of mini marshmallows (optional)
Preheat oven 350 degrees.
Wash potatoes and boil with skin on for 45-60 minutes until soft. Peel off skin from potatoes under stream of cool water, tossing potato skins. (Although not required, I recommend mixing all ingredients by hand to give the pie more of a homemade texture.) Mash peeled potatoes until most, but not all, lumps are gone. Mix in butter until melted, then add eggs. Once butter and eggs are fully mixed in, add condensed milk, sugar, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Pour mixture into pie tins lined with uncooked crusts. These pies will not rise higher than the original level of pie filling, so fill your pie tins to the near top. Bake for 50-55 minutes or until they feel a bit springy in the center. Deep dish pies may take 55-65 minutes until they feel springy to the touch. The pies will settle a bit once cooled. Before eating, cover in marshmallows, and place under broiler for a few minutes until the marshmallows are lightly toasted. Slice and enjoy!
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