Look What I Made: TX-OU Edition!

Sweet potato pie, UT style (photos by Travis Awalt)

It’s Texas-OU weekend. I hope you didn’t need to use I-35E anytime soon. The Red River Shootout is the biggest game of the year and college football’s greatest rivalry, and it’s all happening right here in our own backyard. (And probably your front yard if you live off Lower Greenville.)

For me, personally, attending college football games is a bit much. I can stand and yell for three hours or I can start drinking at ten in the morning, but I’m too old to do both at the same time. I tip my cap to those willing to brave the elements at the game – the hordes of frat kids and fair-goers, the 11am kickoff, the Cotton Bowl itself – but come Saturday I’ll be comfortably indoors at a watching party, stuffing myself (spoiler alert: with pie), having a beverage or two, and hopefully cheering Texas to a one-sided victory.

Jump for some sexy pie-making action.

Sweet potato, ginger, cinnamon and a tiny little brain (counter clockwise from top)

Oh, right, did I mention I’m a Texas fan? Well, I’m a Texas fan. I am also a pie fan, and this recipe – sweet potato pie – is the perfect storm of dessert and Longhorn football fandom. Plus, if you ditch the Longhorn logo and the “Hook ‘Em” on top, you’ve got a delicious alternative to pumpkin pie for the holidays (even in Norman).

As yet unbiased pie shell

As for this weekend, both teams look strong, each having only one loss, so it should be an exciting game. Enjoy, eat up and TEXAS FIGHT!!!… I mean, may the best team win.

A pie that does your trash talking for you

Sweet Potato Pie

(makes one pie)


1 sweet potato, a little over 1 lb
1/2 cup light brown sugar*
1/2 cup greek yogurt
1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp grated ginger
1/4 tsp grated nutmeg
tsp vanilla

Pie Crust:

1 cup flour
1/4 cup chilled butter, cut up
2-3 tbsp cup ice cold water, more or less
1/2 tsp salt
Pie crust scraps cut into the message of your choosing**

1. In a food processor, pulse together flour and salt. Add the chilled butter and pulse until you have a pebbly texture. Add the ice cold water a tbsp at a time, and pulse until you have a dough that’s just coming together. Dump the dough out, form it into a ball, press it down flat, put it in a plastic bag and pop it in the freezer for half an hour. Note: Make sure to use cold water and chilled butter. The dough will be more cooperative that way. Also, you can use less water for a flakier texture, but the dough, being dryer, is difficult to work with.

Prepping the dough

2. On a floured surface, roll the dough into a flat circle, pressing from the center out. You’re looking for about a 10″ circle for a 9″ pie. Trim the excess, place in a pie pan and make the edges fancy either by pinching them together with your thumb and forefinger or simply scoring with a fork.

3. Boil the sweet potato about 45 minutes, until a toothpick or fork will pierce clean through its flesh with basically no resistance. Let it cool down until you can handle it, then peel and mash the flesh thoroughly. Add the greek yogurt and mash again until quite smooth.

4. Add the other filling ingredients and mix thoroughly until – you guessed it – smooth. Pour filling into prepared pie crust. Carefully top with your customized message (if you want one), and bake in a 375 degree oven about 45 minutes until the center of the pie is jiggly, but the rest of it is set. Cool to room temperature. Eat.

Tastes like victory

*Use more sugar if you like a sweeter pie. You can sub white sugar, which is what most recipes call for, but I’ve tried it both ways and I’ve gotta say I greatly prefer the brown sugar version.

**I keep my pie dough scraps (whatever is leftover after you’ve cut the dough into a circle) in the freezer for occasions such as this. For the lettering, I used fridge magnets as a guide.