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Bourbon-Glazed Sweet Potato Tarts

makes 12 tarts

My friend Samantha's grandmother was called Nola. She made these tarts for dinner, they could easily be dessert. When I asked her how she made them, she said she drank half the bottle of bourbon and then started on the sweet potatoes.

Read more about these tarts at Adventures in Slaw. This recipe was featured in the Root Source Challenge #11: Bourbon.


3 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled
4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/3 cup bourbon
5 sheets phyllo dough (four sheets per tart)
1/2 cup butter, melted


prep: 55 minutes
total: 2 hours 40 minutes


slotted spoon
mixing bowls
small saucepan
baking dish
12 small tart pans
potato ricer
pastry bag with piping tip
baking sheet


1. Peel the sweet potatoes and add them whole to a pot of boiling water. Gently boil them until tender, 45 to 60 minutes. With a slotted spoon, carefully remove the potatoes (trying to preserve their shape) and place them in a bowl to cool.

2. Preheat oven to 375F. While the potatoes are cooling, combine the butter, maple syrup and brown sugar in a small saucepan, along with half of the cinnamon, half of the ground cloves and half of the nutmeg. Cook at medium heat until the mixture starts to thicken. Stir in the bourbon and immediately remove from the heat.

3. Cut the cooled potatoes into thick slices and place them in a greased baking dish. Pour the bourbon glaze over the potatoes, being sure to cover all the potatoes completely. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, or until most (not all) of the glaze has evaporated. Take out the potatoes and allow to cool.

4. While the glazed potatoes are cooling, prepare the phyllo dough. First, combine the remaining spices into a small bowl. Melt the 1/2 cup of butter. Place one sheet of the dough on a parchment covered, clean surface. Brush the sheet with melted butter and then sprinkle some of the spice mix over the dough. Place another sheet over this sheet and repeat the process. Repeat this step until you have a layer of five sheets.

5. Cut the sheets into six even squares. Working one square at a time, line a small tart pan with it, molding it to the shape of the pan. Repeat this step with the remaining squares. Repeat this entire process until you have 12 phyllo-lined tart pans.

6. Once the potatoes have cooled, place several slices at a time in a potato ricer and mash the potatoes into a bowl. After placing all of the sweet potato slices through the ricer, give the mash a good stir.

7. Spoon some of the mash into a pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip (I used the wide star tip). Make a swirl pattern with the mash into one of the phyllo lined tart pans. Only fill the tart half way to avoid turning the delicate phyllo dough to mush. Trim off the excess phyllo and place on a baking sheet. Repeat this process for all of the tart pans.

8. Place the baking sheet into the oven and bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until the phyllo dough is golden brown and no longer fragile.

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