Hasselback or accordion-style potatoes were created in Sweden in the 1950s and have become very popular in the last few years. Cooks have discovered how versatile they are and have been accordion-cutting many types of vegetables and fruits.
The potatoes in this sweet potato pie are cut using the Hasselback technique which is putting many rows of cuts into a potato without actually cutting all the way through it. The trick to doing this successfully and quickly is to place a potato into an ex-large spoon for slicing. The sides of the spoon will prevent the knife from cutting through to the bottom of the potato.
Sweet potatoes can be hard to peel. I suggest using a vegetable peeler instead of a knife and it is much easier to do. Also, the potato itself can be hard to cut into. After peeling, place them in water and boil them for 5 minutes. This will not completely cook them, but make them so much easier to slice.
For this recipe, you will need enough potatoes to fill a 10-inch deep-dish pie pan. Cut long potatoes in half or thirds to make them fit. Fill all holes with potatoes so that you have a tightly-packed pie dish.
This pie will take 2 ready-made refrigerated pie crusts or you can make your own crust. Usually, the ready-made crust is 8 inches (20.32 cm) in diameter. The bottom crust will need to be larger than that to fit into a 10-inch pie pan. Expand it by rolling it large enough to easily fit into the pie dish. Cut off any extra dough that hangs over the sides.
After putting all the ingredients into the pie, use the second crust to make a shelf ring that fits around the pie. You can piece together this ring and it will not show because it will be covered with almond slivers. Brush the ring with an egg wash and use the wash to “glue” together the pieces used to make the crust ring. Add the almonds and they will stick to the egg wash. Then after adding all the almonds, brush them with the egg wash by gently tapping the wash onto them so they do not move.
Just before putting the pie into the oven, make a baking ring out of aluminum foil and loosely cover the pie. Bake the pie with this ring for all but the last 10 minutes of cooking to ensure that the almonds and top crust do not over-brown.
This pie has a crunchy contrast of toasted almonds and soft sweet potato. I usually associate sweet potatoes with pecans, but the almonds are unexpectedly delicious with this sweet potato pie.
Try this pie with a small scoop of vanilla ice cream for a delicious treat!