A decadent staple on Southern dessert tables, sweet potato pie's sweet, flavorfully-spiced mashed filling and flaky, buttery crust has been satisfying the palates of Southern and soul food epicures since long before Patti LaBelle's pies emerged in grocery stores (and on social media). However, while cooks have been incorporating the sweet root vegetable into pastries and tarts since as early as the 1700s,the modern version of the delicious dessert first emerged as pone, a crustless dish created by enslaved African Americans. In the succeeding centuries, sweet potato pie has grown in cultural significance, becoming not only central to Southern and African American celebrations and beloved memories, but also regularly inciting spirited debates between its most ardent fans and those of its longstanding rival, pumpkin pie.
But what if there was an easy way to level that rich, creamy goodness all the way up, creating what can only be called the "ultimate" sweet potato pie? Turns out, there is: make it a double — crust, that is.
How To Make The Viral Double Crusted Sweet Potato Pie
The unexpected secret about the top crust of the double crusted sweet potato pie is that it's not actually a second crust in the traditional way — nope, the "crust" atop the viral TikTok double crusted sweet potato pie is actually a medium layer of chess pie (also called "buttermilk pie" or "buttermilk chess pie") another popular Southern dessert with a thick, custardy filling.
The good news is that making this next-level delectable pie isn't nearly as complicated as it looks. It's as simple as preparing your favorite sweet potato pie recipe with a buttery, flaky homemade pie crust and then topping your filling with some thick, creamy chess pie filling (enough to create a top layer), then baking for around 45 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Because of the amount of sugar in the chess pie filling, the custard will caramelize, developing a crispy, crackly top layer as it bakes — and when it's done, voila, you've got a second "crust" reminiscent of the top layer of crème brûlée. But be sure to remember that the pie will continue to cook after you remove it from the oven, so do not leave it in too long. You want the center to still wobble a bit.
How To Top Your Sweet Potato Pie With Traditional Pie Crust
If you want to double crust it up, but you aren't a fan of chess pie, you can indeed top your sweet potato pie with another layer of flaky pie crust for a more traditional double crusted flair. You'll simply want to prepare your sweet potato pie for baking as you normally would, then place a layer of chilled pie pastry across the top. If you're using homemade crust, it's important to note that the bottom layer should have a diameter of about 12 inches to fit the pan, and the top layer should be slightly smaller, about 10 inches. Then, after cutting off any excess dough, you'll want to crimp your edges together using whichever method you prefer; however, the fork crimping method or classic "v" crimp are typically the easiest.
But the best bakers know the secret to a successful double crust is poking holes in the dough — both the bottom and top layer. Be sure to do so before you put it in the oven, so that air can escape and your pie crust doesn't bubble or crack. Brush the top with an egg wash before baking, bake until your crust is golden brown, and then comes the hardest part: waiting until you can have a slice.
Read the original article on Daily Meal.