Simple ingredients combine for a sumptuous holiday dessert.
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup finely crushed graham crackers (about 10 squares)
- 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
- 2 cups mashed, cooked sweet potatoes*
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- Dash cloves
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 cup half-and-half or light cream
- 3 egg whites
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/4 teaspoon rum extract or vanilla extract
6 tablespoons sugar
1. In a medium saucepan melt butter; stir in 3 tablespoons sugar. Add crushed crackers and pecans; toss to mix well. Spread in a 9-inch pie plate; press evenly onto bottom and up the sides. Chill about 1 hour.
2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. For filling, in a large bowl stir together sweet potatoes, brown sugar, ginger, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, and cloves. Add 2 eggs; beat lightly with a fork just until combined. Gradually stir in half-and-half until well combined.
3. Place the graham cracker crust on the oven rack. Pour filling into pie shell. To prevent over browning, cover edge of pie with foil. Bake 20 minutes. Uncover edge of pie. Bake pie 20 to 25 minutes or until the a knife inserted in center comes out clean. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F.
4. Meanwhile, allow 3 egg whites to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. In a large mixing bowl, combine egg whites, cream of tartar, and rum extract. Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until soft peaks form (tips curl). Gradually add the 6 tablespoons sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating on high speed until mixture forms stiff, glossy peaks (tips stand straight) and sugar dissolves (rub a small amount between two fingers; it should feel completely smooth).
5. Immediately spread meringue over hot pie filling, carefully sealing to edge of crust to prevent shrinkage. Bake for 15 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for 1 hour. Chill for 3 to 6 hours before serving. Makes 8 servings.
*Test Kitchen Tip:To make mashed cooked sweet potato, drain one 17.2-ounce can whole sweet potatoes if necessary and transfer to a medium mixing bowl. Mash with potato masher or electric mixer on low speed.
Measure 2 cups mashed sweet potato for pie.