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Friday, October 18, 2013

Coconut Sweet Potato Pie w/ Spiced Graham Cracker Crust {she made, ella hace}

Coconut Sweet Potato Pie w/ Spiced Graham Cracker Crust |
For she made, ella hace this month, Leslie and I are showcasing sweet potatoes!  It's that time of year when I just can't seem to get enough of them.  I think my favorite thing is probably just a simple baked sweet potato with blue cheese, bacon, a few candied pecans, and some chives.  I could probably eat that on a daily basis.  But today, I wanted to combine sweet potatoes with something else that is inevitably on my mind this time of year - PIE!

It's true, once the leaves begin to change colors, and that nip is in the air, the Thanksgiving-menu-gears of my mind start clanking to life.  It's my favorite meal of the year, and I start the planning early.  It's time for me to begin testing pies and side dishes; time to start gathering magazines and books.  It makes me happy.

Coconut Sweet Potato Pie w/ Spiced Graham Cracker Crust |
I have made sweet potato pie in the past, but I wanted one with a different spin this go-round.  I've always used a "regular" crust, this time I went with graham cracker; I love the way its sandy texture and brown sugar-flavor complement the custardy, coconut and sweet potato center.  Will this make the "final cut" (aka the Thanksgiving menu)?  Perhaps, but I still have so many more to test!

Which avenue did Leslie take with sweet potatoes?  She turned left when I turned right.  I took Sweet Lane, she took Savory Street.  You'll definitely want turn down her road, but don't worry, our roads always meet up in the end...  (Check out Leslie's Sweet Potato Tacos with Longaniza.)

Coconut Sweet Potato Pie w/ Spiced Graham Cracker Crust
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Coconut Sweet Potato Pie w/ Spiced Graham Cracker Crust |
by Heather Schmitt-Gonzalez
Prep Time: 15-20 minutes
Cook Time: 45-50 minutes
Keywords: bake dessert vegetarian nut-free soy-free sweet potatoes Thanksgiving Christmas pie American fall winter

Ingredients (serves 6-8)
    for the filling:
    • 2 medium sweet potatoes (~1 pound total), peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
    • 1 cup coconut milk
    • 3 eggs
    • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
    • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
    • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
    • couple big pinches of salt
    for the crust:
    • 4 ounces (8 tablespoons / 1 stick) unsalted butter
    • 1-1/3 cups graham cracker crumbs (~1 sleeve or 9 full crackers)
    • 1/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
    • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
    • 1-1/4 teaspoons ground ginger
    • 1-1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    • big pinch of salt
    Preheat oven to 350° F.

    Place the sweet potatoes into a medium saucepan, and cover with water by an inch. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until tender, 12-15 minutes. Drain and let sit in colander for a couple of minutes.

    While the sweet potatoes are cooking, melt the butter in a medium-sized glass bowl. Add the remaining crust ingredients, and stir with a fork until well combined (it should look like wet sand).

    Dump into a 9-inch pie plate and press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides. I like to use the bottom and edges of a measuring cup to help press it in evenly. Slide into preheated oven and bake for 7 minutes. Carefully remove and set aside while you're finishing up the filling.
    Coconut Sweet Potato Pie w/ Spiced Graham Cracker Crust |
    Place the sweet potatoes into a food process (or powerful blender) along with the remaining pie ingredients and blend until smooth. Note: if the potatoes are still pretty hot, don't add the eggs until you've blended everything else smoothly, to help cool them down a bit, then blend again.

    Set the pie plate and par-baked crust onto a baking sheet, then carefully pour the sweet potato mixture into the crust. Place the whole thing back into the oven and bake until the pie is set, but not dried out, 40-45 minutes. Set the pie on a wire rack to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature.

    -slightly adapted from Mark Bittman via NY Times
    Coconut Sweet Potato Pie w/ Spiced Graham Cracker Crust |
    What happens when two American girls who are both married to Mexican guys find out that although one of them lives in the U.S. and one of them lives in Mexico, they both love eating the same food?  Well, naturally they decide to get "together" the only way they can and cook up the same dishes.  Or perhaps take the same ingredients and talking about them in their own voice or using them in their own way. 

    Leslie and I have teamed up to occasionally cook/bake/make a our own versions of the same food.  We want to see how similar (or how different) they turn out.  Other times we will pick an ingredient and use it however we choose...or maybe just talk about it.  Good food knows no borders and we hope to share the food we love with you.  It's not a competition, it's a showcase.  We will post on the same day as each other and would love to hear your thoughts on what we've made and how you make it. 

    Join me (here at girlichef) and Leslie in her kitchen (at La Cocina de Leslie) for some delicious food.
    She Made, Ella Hace Banner- and