Here are three classic Texas pie recipes, adapted from recipes we published in Cooking with Texas Highways (the University of Texas Press, 2005). May we suggest accompanying these slices with a scoop of Blue Bell ice cream and perhaps a cup of stout coffee?
Heat butter and chocolate together in the top of a double boiler (or in a small bowl in a microwave) until melted. In a large mixing bowl, combine chocolate mixture, syrup, sugars, flour, and salt; mix well. Stir in eggs, vanilla, and pecans; mix well and pour into pastry shell. Bake at 350 degrees for one hour or until pie is set. Cool before slicing.
Sweet Potato Pie
Scrub sweet potatoes and cook in boiling water for 20 minutes or until soft. Drain and peel. Mash enough sweet potatoes to measure 2 cups. (Save the rest for another use.) Cool.
Combine butter, sugar, salt, cinnamon, and allspice in a large bowl and mix well. Add mashed sweet potatoes and eggs; beat until smooth. Add milk and vanilla, stirring well. Pour into pastry shell, and bake at 350 degrees for one hour or until pie is set. Cool before slicing.
Texas Buttermilk Pie (aka Chess Pie)
Combine sugar and flour in a medium bowl. Add butter, eggs, buttermilk, vanilla, and nutmeg; mix well. Pour into pastry shell and bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees and bake until pie is set (about 25 minutes). Cool before slicing.
From the November 2013 issue.