I'm so happy to share this recipe with you guys! as simple as this recipe may be, this sweet potato casserole marks the beginning of my own family traditions to come. perhaps sweet potato casserole is already a staple in your family's holiday lineup, but as for me, we never had sweet potatoes growing up. as I got older, I was definitely aware of the normalcy of sweet potatoes for the holidays and looked on fondly from the sidelines but still didn't partake in sweet potato festivities personally.
fast forward to a thanksgiving potluck in 2011 at engauge, a marketing agency I spent some time working with during grad school. this was not your average potluck since our office basically had a fully functional kitchen with ovens. [awesome for spontaneous cookie baking, not awesome for anything to do with fish]. one of my coworkers made this sweet potato casserole and it was then that I had my very first bite. ever since that fateful day, I've been hooked. every year, I make them for thanksgiving and I like to think that each year, I force my family members to slowly like sweet potatoes more and more. the recipe makes a 9x11 casserole dish, which is always way more than enough for my family. even though I could probably half the recipe, I end up making the full amount and of course - sadly - throwing half of the casserole away after thanksgiving.
this year, I baked half in a glass pie plate to take to my parents' and the other half in a portable, metal 8x8 pan to give to my coworker. his family just moved down to georgia from new jersey this year and it will be the first time he won't be with his parents and relatives for turkey day. when I heard that, I just knew the other half of these delicious sweet potatoes had found a loving and worthy home!
sweet potato mixture:
3 c. mashed sweet potatoes (about 3 potatoes)
1 ½ c. sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1 t. vanilla
1 stick butter, soft
½ c. sweet and condensed milk
1 c. packed dark brown sugar
1/3 c. all purpose flour
1 c. chopped pecans
1/3 c. butter, soft
1. cook sweet potatoes at 425 degrees for an hour. be sure to poke holes in the skins, and bake in a glass pans to avoid drippings running down your oven.
2. shortly after removing from the oven, while still hot, slice the potatoes in half and "gut" the cooked potatoes out from the skins. place the mashed sweet potatoes in a bowl and throw the skins away.
3.add sugar, eggs, vanilla, condensed milk, and butter to the mashed sweet potatoes. place in a greased 9x11 casserole dish, or two 8x8 pans.
4. mix the topping ingredients in a small bowl until blended and crumbly. place on top of potatoes. bake at 375 for 30 minutes.
enjoy! serves about 10 people.