“‘Would you like a slice of pumpkin or sweet potato pie?’ is a very important question after a family Thanksgiving meal,” Jennifer Davis writes in The Southern Baking Cookbook. “I would like some of both, please.” Honestly, so would we, which is why we’re making her pumpkin and sweet potato pie this holiday.
“This recipe is a flavor culmination of southern pie filling and topping,” she continues, “and it really is the best of both worlds. Roasting fresh seasonal sweet potato and pumpkin brings out the best flavors of these fall favorites.”
As Davis explains, Thanksgiving almost always features sweet potato casserole topped with marshmallows and pumpkin pie topped with whipped cream, so why not combine the two? Her pie is topped with homemade vanilla-bourbon marshmallows (the recipe for which you can find in her book), but if you wanted to use store-bought, we’d never tell. For a major upgrade, we highly recommend the vanilla marshmallows from Nikki Darling Confections. It is a holiday, after all.
Reprinted with permission from The Southern Baking Cookbook by Jenn Davis, Page Street Publishing Co., 2021.
One 9-inch pie crust (homemade or store-bought)
All-purpose flour, as needed
1 roasting pumpkin
Olive oil, as needed
Pinch plus ½ teaspoon sea salt, divided
1 sweet potato
2 tablespoons (28g) unsalted butter, melted and warm
¾ cup (165g) dark brown sugar, packed
1 cup (240ml) heavy cream
1 large egg, lightly beaten
3 large egg yolks, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons (16g) all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons (4g) ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
2 tablespoons (30ml) caramel sauce
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 teaspoon water
Toasted vanilla marshmallows, as needed
1. Begin the Filling: Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Halve and scrape the seeds and stringy pulp from the pumpkin. Drizzle the flesh with the oil and season it with a pinch of salt. Place the pumpkin flesh-side-up on the baking sheet. Pierce the skin of the sweet potato all over with a fork, and set it on the baking sheet. Bake until is tender, 45 to 60 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack.
3. Once cooled, scrape out the flesh from both the pumpkin and sweet potato. Using a food processor, puree each separately, then measure 1 cup (244 g) of puree of each. You may have some leftovers, which you can refrigerate to use in another recipe or to make another pie.
4. Place the pumpkin puree, sweet potato puree, butter and brown sugar in a blender or food processor. Blend until the mixture is smooth, then set aside while you partially bake the pie crust.
5. Keep the oven heated to 425°F. Lightly dust a work surface with flour. Have ready a 9-inch pie pan. Roll out the dough on the prepared work surface until it is ⅛-inch thick and about 13 inches in diameter. Transfer the dough to the pie pan. Gently press the dough into the pan, then tuck any overhanging dough under itself and crimp the edges. Use a fork to prick the bottom and sides of the crust several times.
6. Make the Egg Wash: In a small bowl, use a fork to beat together the egg and water. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush the egg wash onto the crimped edges of the crust. Place the pie crust in the freezer for 30 minutes to allow the dough to chill and become firm.
7. When the pie crust is chilled, line the inside with parchment paper, making sure it hangs over the sides. Fill the pie with pie weights or uncooked beans all the way to the crimped edges. Bake in the lower third of the oven until the edges are light golden brown, 15 to 17 minutes. Carefully remove the pie crust from the oven and, wearing oven mitts, remove the parchment paper with the hot pie weights. Return the pie crust to the oven and bake it for 4 minutes more.
8. Remove the pie crust from the oven to cool on a wire rack for about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, reduce the oven’s temperature to 375°F. Reposition the oven’s rack to the middle third of the oven. Line another baking sheet with parchment paper.
9. Finish the Filling: In a medium bowl, whisk together the heavy cream, egg, egg yolks, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, cardamom, remaining ½ teaspoon salt, caramel sauce and vanilla. In a blender, combine the cream mixture and reserved purees and blend until smooth.
10. Transfer the filling to the cooled pie crust and place the pie pan on the prepared baking sheet. Bake until the outer edges of the filling are set and the center has a slight wobble, 40 to 45 minutes. If there is a wave or big ripple when you nudge the pie pan, bake the pie for 8 to 10 minutes more.
11. Remove the pie from the oven and cool to room temperature on a wire rack, 2 to 3 hours, then refrigerate the pie for 1 to 2 hours (or overnight) to allow it to firm up. Before serving the pie, top it with toasted marshmallows.
Note: To prevent the crust from burning, you can loosely cover the pie with aluminum foil at the 30-minute mark if needed.