I recently came across this post by Bits of Taste featuring the purple-colored Japanese sweet potatoes, or "Okinawan" potatoes, prevalent in Japan, Hawaii and many parts of Asia. The posted pictures were so enticing that I had to run out to get some! When I was growing up, we grew these and the orange-colored sweet potatoes in our back garden and would pull them fresh out of the ground whenever we'd wanted to eat some. Unfortunately, we don’t cultivate these around my house now because adult commitments dictate that we should just go ahead and purchase these from the farmer’s market or supermarket if we ever need them. Besides, it’s my mother who has the green fingers and unfortunately, the green finger gene has not been passed down to me.
My eyes glazed over at the thought of these two rich ingredients trapped in a dish – sweet potato and condensed milk - they taste soooo, so good together! Could it be possible to throw them both in a pie and they will still taste heavenly? I didn’t need someone to come over and twist my arm, because that’s what I‘d planned to do when I bought the purplies. Hmm.. but the pie can’t just have any old crust though. I wanted something crunchy, something earthy (whatever that means), then it crossed my mind that maybe oats and wholemeal flour as a base would do the trick. In my excitement about the potatoes, I’d forgotten to buy eggs and found only two left in the fridge. Well, I needed those for the filling so the crust would have to go eggless. Luckily, the oats and wholemeal didn’t need eggs for stickiness, they were perfectly fine by themselves. Gosh, see how amazingly resourceful we human beings can be when pushed into a corner?
The baked sweet potato and condensed milk pie combo really surpassed my expectations (hadn’t I already told you this??). The moist, silky-smooth and tender filling complemented the crusty oats perfectly. Oh, did I say that I also added coconut milk (instead of cream) to the filling? Yes, that sealed the deal for sure! This will be the recipe I will pass down to my children someday. This, and maybe my mother’s green finger gene.
I drizzled extra condensed milk on top of mine because I wanted to feel my mamma's arms around me.. :-)
Purple Sweet Potato Pie with Easy Oats Crust
I cup instant rolled oats
¼ cup wholemeal flour
3 tablespoon brown sugar
½ teaspoon cinnamon powder
5 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons water
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon salt
dash of ground nutmeg
1/2 cup condensed milk
3/4 cup coconut milk
425g (1 can) purple sweet potato, boiled and mashed
1. Lightly grease a 9-inch pie tin or spray with non-stick baking spray. Preheat the oven to 200°C.
2. In a bowl, mix the oats, flour, brown sugar and cinnamon. Work oil and water in until well blended.
3. Pat oat crust into the pie tin with your fingers and bake for 8 to 10 minutes until browned around the edges. Remove from the oven while you prepare the filling. Reduce oven temperature to 180°C.
4. For the filling, whisk the brown sugar, eggs, vanilla and salt in a bowl. Blend in the coconut milk and condensed milk, then add the mashed sweet potato. Mix further until it becomes a smooth mixture.
5. Pour the mixture into the prepared crust and bake for 30-40 minutes, until the filling is just set. A skewer inserted into the center of the pie will come out clean.
6. Remove from oven, cool for 10 minutes before turning out and serving.