A few Thanksgivings ago, Jen and her mom went to the store to get a can of pumpkin for the pumpkin pie. They got home and realized that they had grabbed a can of sweet potatoes instead. Back to the store once more for an exchange, and back home again. The pie was made. And then eaten. And then the second can of sweet potatoes that was accidentally brought home was thrown away before anyone could see.
That’s the problem with so many sweet potato pies – they look like pumpkin pies, but aren’t them. When you are looking forward to pumpkin pie and you get sweet potato, it’s really disappointing. And sweet potato pie shouldn’t be disappointing, or indistinguishable. It should be delicious and unique.
I thought it would make more sense to have sweet potatoes as a side instead of competing with pumpkin pie as a dessert. Cubed instead of pureed. Savory and curried instead of sugared. A pie unlike any pumpkin pie I’ve ever seen.
Curried Yam and Root Vegetable Tart
- 1 pastry dough
- 3 cups yams, chopped in 1/2″ cubes
- 2-3 parsnips, chopped a bit smaller than the yams
- 1 tbs oil
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper
- 2 tsp garam masala/curry powder (+ cinnamon)
- 2-3 cups vegetable stock
- 1 cup raisins
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Oil and salt yams and parsnips on a baking sheet, and roast in oven until halfway done, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle liberally with garam masala and raisins, and mix well. Let rest while preparing the dough.
- Roll pastry dough out to desired size and shape for your oiled baking dish, and place in dish. Use a fork to poke holes in the bottom of the crust.
- Sprinkle crust liberally with garam masala; arrange vegetables in the crust. Pour vegetable stock over the yams.
- Bake pie in the oven for another 20-25 minutes, or until crust gets crispy and golden.
Serve as a sweet and savory side to any holiday meal.
About this author: I'm a New Yorker who would rather cook than go out to restaurants. Sometimes I think I may be in the wrong city for that. Then I remember the exotic ingredients I'd be hard-pressed to find if I lived somewhere else. My cooking style is an eclectic range of everyday-American, Italian, middle-eastern, with extensive forays into Japanese cuisine, and some pit-stops into Indian and African cuisines. I love to try my hand at recreating dishes I taste. While I enjoy most anything with a flavor, from high cuisine to instant junk food, I have a soft spot in my belly for home-style cooking no matter the geographic or ethnic origin. Read more from this author...