Vegetables for dessert? Why not? After all, it’s not called a sweet potato for nothing
- 240g (2 cups) cake flour
- 30ml (2 tbsp) sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 125g butter, cubed
- 85-100ml iced waterFilling
- 1kg orange sweet potatoes
- 30ml (2 tbsp) softened butter
- 3 extra-large eggs, plus 2 egg yolks
- 200g (1 cup) sugar
- Pinch of ground nutmeg
- Pinch of salt
- 45ml (3 tbsp) whisky
- 15ml (1 tbsp) golden syrup
- 5ml (1 tsp) vanilla essence
- 180ml ( cup) milk
- 50g ( cup) sticky brown sugar
- Caramelised nuts
- 100g ( cup) sugar
- 50g whole walnuts
For the pastry, sift the flour, sugar and salt together. Rub in the butter with your fingers until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add water a little at a time, mixing with a round-bladed knife, until the dough comes together. Turn out onto a floured surface, knead gently and roll out. Use the dough to line a 25cm pie dish, gently pressing to fit and leaving at least a 2cm overhang. Use your fingers to create a crimped edge or press down with a fork. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
For the filling, prick sweet potatoes all over with a fork, place on paper towels and microwave on full power for 5 minutes. Turn and repeat for 5 minutes or until tender. Allow to stand until cool enough to handle, then cut in half and spoon the flesh into a large bowl. Mash with the butter. Whisk the eggs, yolks, sugar, nutmeg and salt in a large bowl. Stir in the whisky, syrup, vanilla essence and milk. Mix until smooth, then add to the mashed sweet potato.
Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Remove the pastry from the fridge and blind bake (line the pie with greaseproof paper and weigh down with dried beans) for 15 minutes. Remove beans and paper and return pie to the oven for a further 5 minutes. Remove and sprinkle the base of the pie crust with the brown sugar. Pour the sweet potato mixture evenly over the sugar. Bake for about 45 minutes or until filling is set around the edges but still a little wobbly in the centre.
For the caramelised nuts, melt the sugar in a pan over medium heat. Once it turns golden brown, add nuts and coat well. Remove carefully (they will be very hot) and place on greaseproof paper. Serve the pie warm, topped with the nuts.