For those that know me, one of the things I think I actually do pretty well is bake pies. Well...that and butter cake and cream scones. The rest is up for grabs :)
There have been some EPIC failures over the years, but this is the first time since I started baking my Sweet Potato Praline Pie that I've had it imitate Vesuvius. Well maybe more like that scene in the original Journey to the Center of the Earth with James Mason...when they're in the volcano shaft and the lava just sort of oozes up out of the ground...before they all climb in the ceremonial bowl and escape with the help of all that lava :)
ANYWAY...here are a few pics that I snapped because I needed to remember why I shouldn't use toooo much of the praline topping that really is the best part of the pie. IMHO. I was kindof surprised that the crust came out okay, since I was cutting Mom's recipe in half on the fly...yeah...not always a sure thing. But that part was okay :)
Mashing up canned sweet potatoes and adding in the yummy ingredients worked out okay too, well, except for the fact that I used a deep dish pie plate that wasn't my biggest, so I had some extra filling that I put into a glass loaf pan, figuring I could bake it like a custard. I even had enough topping for it. It disappeared before the pie, so I'm guessing it tasted pretty good. :)
Here's the leftover filling after it came out of the oven.
The topping...probably more than doubled since I eye-balled the pecans, and kept adding just a dash more of the butter, brown sugar, and Karo syrup...and forgot to follow the part of my recipe where I make pralines with the leftover...*SIGH*
I almost forgot to take a pic of the pie...first part of the baking is without the topping...
Of course I forgot to take a pic of the pie partially baked with the topping on it. *sigh*
BUT...here we have the Vesuvius-effect...major spillage onto the cookie sheet that was a shower present all those years ago (used for just this sort of occasion
See where the filling popped up in a few places? That never happened before. *sigh*
Check out the mess from the side! I had to scrape around the pie plate while it was till piping-hot...YUCK!
Here's the "cleaned-up" version of the pie...never would have guessed what a disaster it was, would you? LOL...Oh and btw, it still tasted amazing...there's just something about sweet potatoes combined with all of that praline goodness that makes a body really happy :)
For all of you bakers out there, here's the recipe:
C.H. Admirand's Sweet Potato Praline Pie
© C.H. Admirand 2002
¾ cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ginger
½ tsp nutmeg
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
1 (23 oz.) can sweet potatoes in syrup, drained and mashed (about 2 cups) Note: you can use baked sweet potatoes, but I’m usually short on time and go for the canned ones.
½ c whole milk + ½ c heavy cream
2 large eggs, beaten
Topping: (I like to double the topping, that way I have leftover to make Pralines)
3 tbsp light brown sugar
3 tbsp light corn syrup (or King’s syrup)
1 tbsp butter
½ tsp vanilla (optional)
¾ cup coarsely chopped pecans
1 cup whipped cream
Prepare pie crust, heat oven to 425. In a large bowl, combine all filling ingredients; blend well. Pour into pie crust lined pan. Bake at 425 for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350. Bake an additional 25 minutes.
Meanwhile (during last five minutes of baking time), in a small saucepan, combine brown sugar, corn syrup and margarine. Bring to a boil over low heat. Reduce heat, simmer 2 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla. Sprinkle nuts evenly over pie; drizzle with topping mixture.
Bake an additional 20 to 30 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cool. Garnish with whipped cream.
The real trick is keeping your family away from the pie while it cools; mine can’t seem to keep their hands off the praline topping!