I guess I’m just a lucky guy
And I’m prepared to tell you why
It’s strictly on account of my
Sweet Potato Pie
This version’s by James Taylor and some friends. I’m not sure who originally did the song, but it’s a cool song.
Hey! I had no idea that there was a song called Sweet Potato Pie! That’s what I created this morning beginning at the following time:
It began last night when my sweet daughter shared that she had told her math teacher about the pie-making and had asked her about her favorite kind. Ms. Allen replied that it was sweet potato, which probably would have added her to my pie list anyway BUT, it turns out that her birthday is TODAY! Happy Birthday!
Side note: I’m always a little apprehensive when I know I’m baking someone’s FAVORITE kind of pie. Seems like somehow I’m competing with their Aunt Nancy’s famous recipe or some pie at an awesome restaurant. Then I say to myself, “When have I EVER left a bunch of pie on a plate?” So I just don’t worry about it.
I headed out to buy a few sweet potatoes–they do come in a can, but this time I decided to follow the recipe and use fresh ones. I do like sweet potatoes, especially with marshmallows and nuts and tons of sugar, but I haven’t bought any in a long time. For something that’s supposed to be such a perfect food, I’m afraid I’m gonna have to file it under “Nice Personality” in the Beauty Pageant of Stuff That Grows in the Dirt (BPOSTGIND). Those suckers are ugly. No big deal. We all know that what’s inside is most important.
I baked the potatoes last night–it took about an hour–because I knew I wouldn’t have time in the morning. I also set out lots of ingredients, since I knew I would be getting an early start. I’m not sure if I’ve shared this information before, but I used to think that cooks on TV used all those little prep bowls just to be fancy show-offs. While that may have some truth, I think the real reason is this: They do not want to burn their arm hairs off, chop their fingers up in the food processor, get clothing caught in the mixer, etc. And they especially do not want to SCREW UP THE FOOD. If there’s anything I’ve learned in the kitchen over the last couple of weeks it’s to read the recipe twice (at least) and BE PREPARED.
So today at the pre-crack of dawn I dumped those taters into my food processor (skins removed, of course) and that machine did it’s squish-stuff-up magic. I liked this recipe (from my PIE cookbook, which I highly recommend if you ever want to make pies) because you mix the whole thing in the food processor bowl. Everything was poured into the shell and headed into the oven by 6:15 a.m. Yawn. I would’ve been up anyway, because our youngest has to be on the bus by 6:40 each day.
It smelled so good while it was baking that my daughter declared, “They should make a sweet potato pie candle!” I thought it looked pretty good, but something annoying did happen in the oven.
The cookie sheet that I put under the pie (you really just have to do that for really liquidy pies–especially in give-away pie tins) BUCKLED in the oven–I heard it. I know this can happen with some metals. My sister’s suggestion was to invest in heavy-duty steel sheets which do not move in the heat. I just might, because even though the pie looked all right and did not leak out of its shell, it wasn’t as level as I’d like.
The pie had an hour to cool on the rack before we needed to leave for school. I covered it in plastic wrap, and my daughter wrote a nice birthday note for her teacher. We added a fork and knife–when it’s your birthday, you reserve the right to just dig into a pie right when you want to. We delivered the pie to Ms. Allen, and she was very gracious about it. I cautioned her to wait at least an hour before she ate it so that the pie would come out of the pan OK. She said that she would and said some nice things about our sweet kid. Love that sweet kid! Then it was time for me to go home, as I had exceeded the amount of minutes a middle schooler’s mom can be at school without it getting weird, apparently.
Whether Ms. Allen likes the pie or not–I sure hope she does–I hope she’ll know that she’s appreciated by us and by our kid. Teaching math is important, but teaching advanced math to middle schoolers–well, that just deserves extra recognition. Thank you, Ms. Allen, for having a positive impact on our child. You are making a difference each day!
22 days to go ’till the big four oh. 3 weeks and 1 day. 540 hours. 32, 411 minutes. Whatcha gonna do with your next 32, 411 minutes? Just curious.