A few weeks ago, one of my neighbors, Ben, a true Cajun from Lafayette, was nice enough to share a treat he brought back from a specialty meat store back home. Boudin Pie. It was an awesome combination of salty and sweet, with a creamy sweet potato topping. Ben had sampled my boudin corn bread concoction a few months back, and we immediately thought "we can make this for ourselves."
So last Friday, we did. Ben happens to be a pretty accomplished baker (makes a great Key Lime Pie), so he made a pie crust, picked up some boudin and we got to experimentin'. Here are the results.
3 links of pre-cooked boudin
3 large sweet potatos
1/4 cup brown sugar
half a stick of butter
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp cane syrup
1/2 cup Pecans, chopped
Basic Pie Crust (see below)
1. Make the pie crust to your recipe's instructions. Ben and I used the basic crust recipe out of John Folse's Encyclopedia:
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
6 tbsp cold water
1/4 pound cold unsalted butter, cut into half-inch pieces
1/4 cup cold vegetable shortening, cut into half-inch pieces
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
In a food processor, briefly blend flour, sugar and salt. Add butter and shortening in chunks. Blend 30 seconds or until coarse crumbs form. Blend in lemon juice and water until moist crumbs form. Gently shape into 2 equal circles, 4-5 inches in diameter. Cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Place 1 circle of dough between 2 large pieces of lightly floured parchment. Roll until 1/8-inch thick and 14 inches in diameter. Remove top sheet of parchment. Gently roll dough around pin and position pin over pie pan. Ease dough into pan gently, but firmly press edge of dough, allowing it to hang over outer edge of pan. Tuck this dough under to rest on top of rim, and pinch-crimp edges. Repeat with second dough circle. Freeze crust for at least 30 minutes. Line crust with large piece of foil, fill with pie weights and bake 12 minutes at 425 degrees. Remove foil and weights, and continue baking until shell is golden.
Note: a slightly deeper is probably better for this -- the one we used here, we wish had been a bit deeper.
2. Remove your boudin from casing into a small bowl, and kneed together into a ball.
3. Line the bottom of the crust with the boudin. Set aside.
4. Peel and cube your sweet potatoes. Cover with water and bring to a boil for about 10-15 minutes or until fork tender. Drain, reserving slightly less than a half a cup of the water. Place in a bowl. Mash or whip the potatoes, adding the butter, brown sugar, salt and cane syrup. Mix well. You might want to add a little more to your individual taste. Feel free. Really, this part of the recipe is the best place to personalize. Make the topping as you will.
5. Spread the whipped sweet potatoes over the surface of the boudin, making sure not to cover the top of the crust too much. Sprinkle the top with the chopped Pecans.
6. Bake in a 400-degree oven for at least 30 minutes, or until the crust is nice and golden brown. In hindsight, Ben suspects that an egg wash might've helped with the crust a little bit. A little brown sugar sprinkled on top of the sweet potatos/pecans might help give you a little more of a glaze on top. If you're an experienced pie maker, play with it to your tastes.
Sorry, things fell apart a bit in this last picture.
Serves 6 or so. Ben was convinced we could do better, but honestly, this was pretty damn good. Still, we may keep experimenting through the fall.