Sweet Potato Pie
Davis Farmers Market Cookbook, by Ann M. Evans

 In the United States the sweet potato is closely associated with African American and southern cooking and is used in both savory and a sweet dishes. Varieties with moist orange flesh are often mistakenly called yams, but the true yam belongs to a completely different species and is native to Africa. This classic pie shows off the inherent sweet flavor and smooth texture of the tuber. Schletewitz Family Farms brings amazing Garnet sweet potatoes to the market each season, along with fifteen kinds of fruit and nuts.

2 large red-skinned, orange-fleshed sweet potatoes (about 2 pounds total)
1 cup (2 cubes) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
Grated zest and juice of 1/2 orange
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, preferably freshly ground from a cinnamon stick
1 9-inch pie shell, homemade (see crust from Basic Fruit Pie on page 47 of the Davis Farmers Market Cookbook; use the larger disk only) or, your favorite recipe, or purchased
Whipped cream for serving (optional)

  1. Preheat the oven to 425º F. Prick each sweet potato several times with the tip of a paring knife, then place them on a baking sheet. Bake until the knife slides easily to the center of each sweet potato, about 1 hour. Let cool about 30 minutes, then halve each sweet potato lengthwise and scoop the flesh into a bowl, discarding the skins. Mash with a potato masher or fork until smooth, measure 2 cups, and set aside. Reserve any flesh that remains for another use.
  2. In a bowl, combine the butter and sugar and cream them together with the back of a wooden spoon or with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the sweet potatoes and beat until thoroughly blended. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition until incorporated. Stir in the orange zest and juice and cinnamon, mixing well.
  3. If using the basic fruit pie crust, roll out the dough and line a 9-inch pie pan as directed, trimming the overhang evenly to ¾ to 1 inch. Fold the overhang under and pinch or flute to create an attractive edge. Pour the sweet potato mixture into the homemade or purchased pie shell, spreading it evenly.
  4. Bake for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350º F. and continue to bake until the filling has puffed and is golden on the edges and the crust is golden, 20 to 30 minutes longer. Let cool on a wire rack for at least 15 minutes to set before cutting into slices. Serve warm, at room temperature, or slightly chilled, with whipped cream, if you like. Serves 8