White Sweet Potato Lime Pie with Cranberry Topping

by Maria Theresa Maggi on December 22, 2013

White Sweet Potato Lime Pie with Cranberry Topping

When I was small, and my mother would talk about things that happened before I was born, I would always ask, “Where was I then?” And she would always answer “you were in the mind of God.” I never tired of the mystery of what that might possibly mean, and how people and things in this world could go from “there” to being “here.” That I was “there” even when she didn’t know I was. This recipe is one of those gifts. It isn’t something I knew I always wanted to make, or that I would even think about making. But when my friend Jeanne described a lime cheesecake with cranberry sauce she made for Thanksgiving, this little gem of a pie recipe came forward from wherever in the great mystery of things it had been biding its time.

At first I thought I would try to approximate a very white cheesecake look with the sweet potatoes.  But then I realized I wanted to overcome my inner cheapskate to follow the example of my good friend Cathy Fisher at Straight Up Food and sweeten this pie with dates instead of white sugar. (Fresh organic medjool dates shipped to our co-op from California are exquisite but pricey. I usually eat them one at a time like caramels.) That was the decision that gave this pie its individual destiny. It wouldn’t be like a date sweetened pumpkin pie, but it wouldn’t be quite like a vegan cheesecake either. It would be well, something altogether unique.

The tastes I wanted in the crust came to me as Romeo and I made our morning rounds on Paradise Creek trail . Being the One Woman Council on the Wonders of Millet, of course I wanted to take my cobbler topping and cookie recipe into the realm of pie crust. I felt certain that my homemade pear sauce, almonds, and almond extract would be good together with millet in a crust.

When I made this pie, I thought it was a flop. I thought maybe it was too plain, and that I had not made quite enough filling. I thought the cranberry sauce was not transparent enough. I burned the edges of the crust a bit, so I thought the pie would not photograph well. But I took the photos anyway, disappointed with each one as it flashed across the screen afterwards. So I didn’t plan on blogging about it, or even sharing it with anyone. When a friend walked in while it was cooling and said it looked good, I told her it was a no-go.

But I was wrong. The pie tasted wonderful. And it got better the next day after chilling. And the next. The delicate lacing of lime and vanilla in the filling went perfectly with the sweet potato and dates. The texture was velvety and unique. And the cranberry topping was indeed an exciting complement, even if it wasn’t transparent. And the photos, when I went to delete them all, were better than I had thought. And then I got brave enough to share a couple of slices with my neighbor Ashley. She said it had just the right amount of sweetness and the cranberries gave it just the right amount of tartness.

The things that I thought were mistakes turned out to be blessings. It didn’t need to be completely covered with the cranberry topping. It just needed a nice smattering of that in the center, so the filling could stand alone near the crust.

Whenever I create something new, I like that I don’t know how it’s going to turn out. And I like it even better when it overturns my curmudgeonly tendency  to assume it’s not coming out the way I think it should. Like all things waiting in the mind of God, this pie surprised me. Most surprising and wonderful of all is how healthy it is, and how easy to digest. And oh, how delicious. So magical these 3 thing can actually  go together. If only we trusted what inspiration comes  to us each day from the Great Mystery, or mind of God, whatever you want to call it, life would truly be a feast.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

Christmas Trees and Presents by Maria Theresa Maggi

Maria (moonwatcher)

Leave a Comment

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Susan Voisin December 23, 2013 at 9:24 am

What a beautiful drawing, Maria, as well as a beautiful pie! Thank you for it and for your lovely presence here, a gift to us every day. Have a wonderful Christmas!


2 moonwatcher December 23, 2013 at 9:41 am

Thanks so much, Susan!! So glad you like both the drawing and the pie. 🙂 It’s a delight and an honor to be part of the FatFreeVegan family. 🙂 You have a wonderful Christmas too. 🙂


3 Kiwi Fan December 23, 2013 at 7:25 pm

Dear Maria, many thanks for the yummy Christmassy recipes you’ve posted lately and all the delightful stories relating to them. Just wanted to wish you a wonderful Christmas with many blessings in the year ahead. Here we are surrounded by our red-flowering Christmas trees (Pohutukawa) – a spectacular sight this year. Keep cosy around your fire and keep well. xxx P.S. What a delightful drawing!


4 moonwatcher December 23, 2013 at 11:37 pm

Dear Kiwi Fan, you are so very welcome. 🙂 Glad you have enjoyed them. I took a quick look at your red-flowering Christmas trees and they are gorgeous! So happy you liked the drawing. 🙂 Thanks for the wonderful Christmas and new year blessings. I am wishing you the same. 🙂


5 Veronica December 24, 2013 at 12:21 pm

Wow, I would have never thought to put those flavors together! It sounds and looks delicious. And just the right amount of indulgence! 🙂 The picture is lovely, also!
Thank you so much for all your wonderful stories and support this year, it’s all helped more than you’ll ever know. I wish you all the best this Christmas, and an amazing 2014!
xoxo, Veronica


6 moonwatcher December 24, 2013 at 12:25 pm

Thanks, Veronica! I was just over one your blog commenting and wishing you a Merry Christmas while you were here on mine–how fun is THAT?! I’m so glad this pie sounds and looks good to you–and you are so very welcome–it’s a gift to have such wonderful readers. Here’s to an amazing and healthy 2014 for all of us!!


7 Veronica December 24, 2013 at 12:32 pm

LOL – yes, great minds think alike!! 🙂


8 Corrin Radd March 4, 2014 at 6:14 pm

Made this today to serve for breakfast. Loved it.


9 moonwatcher March 4, 2014 at 7:03 pm

So happy to hear this Corrin! Thanks for letting me know. 🙂


Previous post:

Next post: