Sweet Potato Pecan Pie with Chantilly Cream

This pecan pie recipe was recommended by Charlotte Lancaster. She says, “Baking the pie in a cake pan instead of a pie pan means it holds its shape, as well as its delicious contents and the buttery crust is awesome!” The decision to use fresh Louisiana pecans will be an excellent choice.

Dough Ingredients
3 Tablespoons unsalted butter, salted
2 Tablespoons sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
½ of a whole egg (Vigorously beaten until frothy – reserve the other half for the sweet potato    filling)
2 Tablespoons cold milk
1 cup all-purpose flour

Sweet Potato Filling Ingredients
2 to 3 sweet potatoes (or enough to yield 1 cup cooked pulp), baked
¼ cup packed, light brown sugar
2 Tablespoons sugar
½ egg, vigorously beaten until frothy (reserved   above)
1 Tablespoon heavy cream
1 Tablespoon unsalted butter, softened
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Pecan Pie Syrup Ingredients
¾ cup sugar
¾ cup dark corn syrup
2 small eggs
1 ½ Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
Pinch of ground cinnamon
¾ cup pecan pieces or halves

Directions for Dough
1. Place the softened butter, sugar and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer; beat on high speed until the mixture is creamy. Add the ½ egg and beat 30 seconds. Add the milk and beat on high speed 2 minutes. Add the flour and beat on medium speed 5 seconds, then on high speed just until blended, about 5 seconds more (over mixing will produce a tough dough).

2. Remove the dough from the bowl and shape into a 5 inch patty about ½ inch thick. Lightly dust the patty with flour and wrap in plastic wrap; refrigerate at least 1 hour, preferably overnight. (The dough will last up to one week refrigerated.)

3. On a lightly floured surface roll out dough to a thickness of 1/8 to ¼ inch. Very lightly flour the top of the dough and fold it into quarters. Carefully place dough in a greased and floured 8 inch round cake pan (1 ½ inches deep) so that the corner of the folded dough is centered in the pan. Unfold the dough and arrange it to fit the sides and bottom of pan; press firmly in place. Trim edges. Refrigerate 15 minutes.

Directions for the Sweet Potato Filling
Combine all the ingredients in a mixing bowl. Beat on medium speed of electric mixer until the batter is smooth, about 2 to 3 minutes. Do not over beat. Set aside.

Directions for the Pecan Pie Syrup
Combine all the ingredients except the pecans in a mixing bowl. Mix thoroughly on slow speed of electric mixer until the syrup is opaque, about 1 minute; stir in pecans and set aside.

To assemble:
1. Spoon the sweet potato filling evenly into the dough-lined cake pan.

2. Pour the pecan syrup on top.

3. Bake in a 325 degree F oven until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, about 1 ¾ hours. (Note: The pecans will rise to the top of the pie during baking.)

Cool and serve with Chantilly Cream. Store the pie at room temperature for the first 24 hours, then (in the unlikely event there is any left) refrigerate.

Chantilly Cream Ingredients
2/3 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon brandy
1 teaspoon Gran Marnier
¼ cup sugar
2 Tablespoons dairy sour cream

Directions for Chantilly Cream
Refrigerate a medium-size bowl and beaters until very cold. Combine cream, vanilla, brandy and Gran Marnier in the bowl and beat with electric mixer on medium speed 1 minute. Add the sugar and sour cream and beat on medium just until soft peaks form, about 3 minutes. DO NOT OVER BEAT. (Over beating will make the cream grainy, which is the first step leading to butter. Once grainy you can’t return it to its former consistency, but if this ever happens, enjoy it on toast!)

Makes about 2 cups

From Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Louisiana Kitchen