September 18, 2013

Sweet Purple

We like the grow things purple: bell peppers, tomatoes, carrots, potatoes, eggplant, green beans and, yes, sweet potatoes. And the second question* people usually ask us about the purple vegetables is, will they stay purple when you cook them?

When it comes to purple sweet potatoes, the answer is a definitely YES.

Just ask John, who is probably the only baby on the block who eats purple potatoes for baby food:

Daddy, you realize these are supposed to be orange, right?
 Or ask my baking assistant, Natalie...
Ready for pie baking 101

who helped me make a purple sweet potato pie today. I'm sure this will be the first of many made in the coming months.
Purple Sweet Potato Pie, awaiting a meringue
It's actually a very easy pie to make. So, if you are feeling ambitious, here's the recipe:

Sweet Potato Pie, Paula Deen style

3   egg whites
1   9-inch unbaked pie crust
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1 cup milk
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
2   eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or 1-2 tablespoons bourbon
1/2   stick melted butter
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 cups peeled, cooked purple sweet potatoes

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. For the filling, using an electric hand mixer, combine the potatoes, 1 cup of the sugar, the butter, eggs, vanilla, salt, and spices. Mix thoroughly.
  3. Add the milk and continue to mix.  
  4. Pour the filling into the pie crust and bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.  
  5. Place the pie on a rack and cool to room temperature before covering with meringue.
  6. For the meringue, using an electric mixer, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form; beat in the remaining 1/4 cup sugar 1 tablespoon at a time.  Continue beating until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is glossy and stiff, but not dry.  
  7. With a rubber spatula, spoon the meringue onto the pie, forming peaks.  Make sure the meringue touches the crust all around.  Sprinkle with a pinch of granulated sugar.  
  8. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until delicately browned.  Cool and serve.

*The first question people usually ask is, are they supposed to be that color?