Thursday, March 31, 2011

March Roundup

Thank you to the few that participated in our March challenge. Your pies look wonderful! Thank you to Vivian for the challenge. Looking forward to April.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Irish Potato Custard Pie

Posted by - Angela/Soap Mom's Kitchen

Unfortunatley, I had to miss the past two challenges.   I was just too busy.  Well, I am back and I really enjoyed making this pie.  I have to admit being around a lot of great Midwestern and Southern cooks in my day, I never heard of white potato pie or Irish Potato Pie. I always made the traditional sweet potato pie. So this is my first potato pie using just white potatoes.

After searching the web and finding many savory recipes for Irish Potato Pie, I have to admit, I was intrigued by Vivian's recipe post. I decided to add a little cream cheese, increased the sugar slightly and added the seeds of a vanilla bean. I used my favorite and easy Amish recipe pie crust, a little whip cream and of course a little homemade caramel sauce with a hint of Irish Whiskey. I made caramel sauce last week and stored it in my fridge. I used Dorie Greenspan's recipe. It is a fool proof caramel, but I listed an easy alternative below with store bought caramel.

I hope you all like my adaption of Vivian's recipe. I think this recipe can be interpreted in several different ways. I even think adding  ground pecan nuts to the crust would have been nice or even doing a topping of burnt sugar on top, similar to a creme brulee would be interesting.

The pie was darn good! I will definitely be making it every St. Patrick's Day. It does taste like a custard, but I think the caramel sauce added a little something extra. I am going to make another one for St. Patrick's Day. Thanks Vivian! You learn something new everyday.

Irish Potato Pie
Yield: 8 to 10 servings

3 eggs
2 cups half-and-half
2 cups plain mashed potatoes
4 oz. cream cheese
1 1/4 cup sugar
1 vanilla bean pod seeded
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon Irish whiskey
1 unbaked 9-inch deep-dish pie shell with high fluted edge (Recipe below)
Freshly grated nutmeg

Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a large mixing bowl, I used my immersion blender and blended all the ingredients until smooth. Pour into prepared unbaked pie crust. I had a little left over, but I did not want to overflow the pie. I placed the pie on top of a cookie sheet to bake, to prevent spillage in the oven.

Cover the fluted edge of the pie shell with aluminum foil to prevent overbrowning.

Place on the center rack of the oven and bake for 40 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for 15 more minutes. Cool to room temperature. Refrigerate. I served my pie cold with whip cream and caramel sauce.

Amish Pie Crust Recipe:

3 cups flour
2 1/4 sticks unsalted butter
Pinch salt
1T. sugar
1 egg
1/3 cup cold water
1 T. white vinegar or apple cider

In a food processor blend flour, salt, sugar, and butter until clumps form the size of peas. Add beaten egg, vinegar, water in a steady stream through your feed tube, process until a ball forms. Place in plastic wrap and put into fridge for 30 minutes. Roll out and place in pie pan.

Caramel Sauce with Irish Whiskey (adaption)

Source of basic recipe: Dorie Greenspan
1 cup sugar
3 T. water
1 T. light corn syrup
3/4 cups heavy cream
1 T. unsalted butter
1T. Irish Whiskey (not in the original recipe, I added this to keep with the Irish theme)

Put the sugar, water and corn syrup in a medium heavy bottomed saucepan and stir just to combine. Heat over medium to hight heat, without stirring, if the mixture is coloring unevenly, swirl the pan as needed to blend, until the caramel turns a deep amber, 5 to 10 minutes, depending on the size of your saucepan and the intenstiy of the heat. As the sugar is caramelizing, wipe down any splatters on the sides of the pan with a pastry brush dipped in cold water. To test the color of the caramel, drop a bit on a white plate. Don't be timid about the color if it too pale, it won't have much taste.

Lower the heat, stand back from the saucepan because the caramel will bubble and spatter and add the cream and butter. When the spatters are less vehement, stir to smooth and calm down the caramel. Add whiskey and stir well. Remove the pan from the heat. Pour the caramel into a heatproof jar and cool until it is slightly warm and still pourable before using, about 1 hour.

1 Jar of store bought caramel sauce. Heat sauce in a heavy duty sauce pan and add 1 T. of Irish Whiskey. Heat through and your done!

Whip Cream Topping:
2 cups of heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup of powder sugar

Put cream and powder sugar in a mixing bowl. On medium speed start whipping with the whip attachment. Increase speed to high and continue beating until stiff peaks form. You can pipe rosettes or just dollop on with a spoon.

I grated fresh nutmeg on top of my pie.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Mashed Potato Pie

Posted by -Cindy
Surprisingly, this pie was actually good! When I read that we were making mashed potato pie, I must admit I was skeptical.

I did have to make a few changes. I didn't want to by booze just for a tablespoon of it, so I substituted lemon juice. I also used lemon juice in place of the vanilla. And of course, I used a graham cracker crust. I hate nutmeg and left that off and I didn't have nuts so those are missing too! :)
I tried to get the potatoes smooth with a mixer but was not completely successful.
If you closed your eyes and took a bite of this pie, you'd think you were biting into a custard pie.
It was tasty,creamy and very rich.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

March Challenge: Irish Potato Pie

Posted by - Vivian

I'm rather keen on holidays myself. While the kids were growing up I took great care to have the house decorated for every holiday. We even celebrated some of the lesser known celebration days such as Dr. Seuss day, Chocolate day... etc. The kids loved it and made for great memories and now I've restarted the tradition with my grandsweetie :-)
Saying that, when I was asked to step in and fill the spot for the March challenge I was instantly drawn to traditional Irish desserts. There are many fabulous recipes sounding recipes out there but many included the use of whiskey or beer. Since I knew that many of you cook with your children I just wanted to bypass those recipes this round (although I myself will have to give a few of those a try!) Interestingly enough, I came across this recipe for Irish Potato Pie and, to quote,"this recipe, with slight adjustments, was brought over "on the boat" by the cook's great-great-aunt shortly after a potato famine in the 1880s. When asked why she had brought a potato pie (rather than a fruit pie) recipe with her, she'd answer that she had hoped that America would have an abundant supply of potatoes, as in Ireland there was "nary a sound potato to be had there. May God bring them back." Of course, God did, and we celebrate that with the fine legacy of Aunt Bridget's potato custard pie. Mary Cummings, New Smyrna Beach, Florida, The Old Farmer's Almanac Recipe Contest, Dublin, New Hampshire."
Doesn't sound like I could get a more traditional recipe than that! Had to hustle to get it made today so that I could have some pictures for you. While I chose this recipe, there are a few other dessert style potato pies to choose from so feel free to browse the net!
Irish Potato Pie
recipe from
Yield: 8 to 10 servings
3 eggs
2 cups half-and-half or light cream
2 cups mashed potatoes (whipped smooth with no lumps)  I'm assuming they mean without milk or butter... that's what I did any way.
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon Irish whiskey, brandy, or sherry (optional)  
1 unbaked 10-inch deep-dish pie shell with high fluted edge
Freshly grated nutmeg
Toasted slivered almonds

Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs slightly. Stir in the half-and-half or cream, potatoes, sugar, vanilla, salt, and liquor (if using). Beat well until smooth.

Cover the fluted edge of the pie shell with aluminum foil to prevent overbrowning. Pour the filling into the shell and sprinkle with nutmeg.

Place on the center rack of the oven and bake for 40 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for 15 to 18 minutes more, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Sprinkle the almonds around the outer edge and dust with additional nutmeg. Serve at room temperature; store in the refrigerator.
I used my ricer to get my potatoes super smooth