Patti LaBelle's Sweet Potato Pie
Deep dish pie crust (see note below)
3 large orange-fleshed sweet potatoes, scrubbed
8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, melted
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs, beaten
1/4 cup half-and-half
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Whipped cream, for serving (optional)
For the filling: Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the sweet potatoes and reduce the heat to medium. Cook until the sweet potatoes are tender when pierced with a knife, about 30 minutes. Drain and run under cold water until cool enough to handle. Peel the sweet potatoes and place in a medium bowl.
Mash with an electric mixer on medium speed until very smooth. Measure 3 cups mashed sweet potatoes, keeping any extra for another use, and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Uncover the pie shell and brush the interior with some of the melted butter. Sprinkle 1/4 cup of the brown sugar over the bottom of the pie shell. Bake until the pie dough is set and just beginning to brown, about 15 minutes. If the pie shell puffs, do not prick it.
Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, using an electric mixer on low speed, mix the mashed sweet potatoes, the remaining melted butter and 1/2 cup brown sugar, the granulated sugar, eggs, half-and-half, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
Spread into the partially baked pie shell, smoothing the top.
Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees. Bake until a knife inserted in the center of the filling comes out clean, about an hour and a half. Cool completely on a wire cake rack. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve with whipped cream.
Note: To save time, I used a store-bought deep dish pie crust, which I placed into a deep pie plate.
Reprinted from "LaBelle Cuisine." Copyright © 1999 by Patti LaBelle with Laura B. Randolph.