As we know, cassava pie is essential to a Bermudian Christmas. To the uninitiated, cassava pie is an odd mix of sweet and savory cake with a layer of meat on the inside. Families usually make a large quantity of cassava for Christmas and eat it hot or cold and some even wrap a few slices up to save for Easter Sunday.
Cassava pie recipes vary as much as Bermudian families. We set out to make a fairly simple version to share with you in time for Christmas.
The Bermudian’s Cassava Pie
1 pan approximately 12” x 16”
5lbs Bermuda Cassava
3lbs cooked chicken (1.5 lb thighs + 1.5 lb breasts, skinless) Simmered in chicken broth until cooked through, deboned and chopped into bite-size pieces.
1 small pork tenderloin, simmered in broth until cooked through, cut into bite-size pieces
3/4 lb butter, room temperature
6 Windy Bank jumbo eggs, beaten
1 1/4 cups light brown sugar
3/4 cups white sugar
1.5 tablespoons salt
1.5 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp all spice
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp ground ginger
2 large + 1 small nutmeg, grated
Remove any excess skin from chicken.
Place chicken, vegetables and herbs in large pot cover with stock. Simmer until chicken is falling off bone.
Once cooked, cool and debone chicken and cut into bite size pieces.
In same broth, simmer pork for 15 to 20 minutes until no longer pink. Cool pork and cut into bite size pieces.
Strain broth and chill.
Bring butter and eggs to room temperature.
Cream butter, sugars and spices until mixture is fluffy.
Beat eggs and then incorporate eggs into butter, sugar and spice mixture, making sure it is well blended.
In very large bowl, combine cassava and butter mixture and mix well using hands.
Line bottom of pan with half of the cassava mixture, making sure to cover the sides of the pan as well.
Cover the cassava mixture in an even layer of chicken and pork.
Ladle warm reserved stock onto meat to moisten.
Cover the meat with remaining cassava mixture.
Make patter in the top of the mixture with tines of fork, don’t be afraid to get creative!
Bake pie at 325 degrees for 2 to 2.5 hours. Baste with broth if necessary.