• Kumera pie (Petrina Tinslay)Source: Petrina Tinslay

This is the food dept's Australian answer to the traditional American pumpkin pie. So try kumara instead of pumpkin, for a little twist on Independence Day.






Skill level

Average: 4 (1 vote)


  • 700 g kumara
  • 1 quantity sable pastry
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1½ cups cream
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp extra brown sugar
  • double cream, for serving
  • maple syrup, for serving

Sable pastry

  • 250 g butter, softened
  • 125 g caster sugar
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 350 g flour

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Chilling time several hours or overnight

Sable pastry makes enough pastry for a 23 cm (9 inch) pie and decorative leaves.

To make the sable pastry, place the butter and sugar in the bowl of a food processor and process until creamy.
Add the yolks one at a time through the feeding tube of the processor. Add the flour and pulse the mixture until it comes together to form a dough.

Remove from the processor and flatten into a disc, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
Bring pastry back to room temperature and give it a very gentle knead. Line the pie plate and refrigerate again for 1 hour or until ready to bake.

Preheat oven to 180˚C (360˚F). Cut the unpeeled kumara in half lengthways. Wrap each half in foil and bake for 1 hour or until tender. Remove from the oven and when cool enough to handle, scoop out the flesh and discard the skin. Measure 2, firmly packed cups of kumara puree and set aside.

Roll out pastry between 2 sheets of baking paper. Line a 23 cm (9 inch) pie plate with pastry and pinch the edge to make a decorative rim on the pie. Chill for 1 hour. Reserve the remaining pastry. Line the pastry shell with baking paper and fill with pie weights, rice or dried beans. Bake blind for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside, increase the oven to 200˚C (400˚F).

Combine the kumara, brown sugar, eggs, cream, salt and spices in the bowl of a large food processor. Process to combine, set aside.

Roll out the remaining pastry and using a maple leaf cutter and or a small knife cut out a variety of different size maple leaf biscuit shapes. Place on a lined baking tray, mark in the veins of the leaves and sprinkle with extra brown sugar. Bake for 10 minutes or until brown.

Remove the pie weights from the pastry shell, pour in the kumara mixture and bake in the hot oven for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven to 180˚C (360˚F) and continue baking for 30–40 minutes or until the sweet potato custard sets. Cool and serve with double cream, maple syrup and maple leaf biscuits.


Photography by Petrina Tinslay, styling by David Morgan and art direction by Anne Marie Cummins.