Sweet potato pie is a staple for Anthony Anderson’s family — and not just over the holidays.
“I grew up eating it every holiday — Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s. Sometimes they would just bake it on a Sunday. And it goes back as far as I can remember,” the Black-ish star, 50, exclusively told Us Weekly. “Of course, over the years the recipe has been passed down and then you find things that you want to add to it and put your own spin on it. But at its core it’s still the recipe that we grew up eating. It’s a part of the family.”
The recipe is such a favorite that his family created a text chain after no one brought it during one (dreadful) gathering.
“One year we didn’t have sweet potato pie because every other family member thought the other family member was bringing the pie. So we made a vow that would never happen again. And then the next year everybody brought a sweet potato pie. So now we are on the family thread,” Anderson added. “Any holiday, ‘OK. Who is bringing the pie? OK, who is making the backup?’ That’s how we are now. That’s how serious we are about our sweet potato pie dessert.”
So important that the Emmy nominee recently partnered with McCormick to prank his loved ones. By using some of the company’s spices, he tested their knowledge if they could taste the difference between their traditional recipe and a regular sweet potato pie.
“I come from a family of pranksters and jokesters and we do things like this all the time. So that was fun to do. Normally, the family tries to pull a prank on me, so it was great to be able to get them back with this,” Anderson explained to Us. “To be able to sit there and talk about a family recipe that we’ve had in the family for years — sweet potato pie is our favorite. And to make it with that spice factor and to watch the family and one, sit back and see if they are going to be honest about the taste. And two, when they are honest about it how bad, are they going to ridicule me for it? And then I get to come on and say, ‘It was just a joke. Here’s the real pie.’”
Anderson will once more dig into the dessert during Thanksgiving, but his get-together will be much smaller this year amid the ongoing pandemic.
“It looks a lot different. Everyone is very cautious about exposing themselves to people and unfortunately we have this pandemic going on right now. So it will be interesting to see how we are going to congregate as a family during the holidays,” he said. “Our kids are out of the house now, so we are empty nesters, but I’m not sure how and what we are going to do. It’s definitely different than how it’s been in years past. We definitely won’t have 30 or 40 people [as usual] at my house – I’ll tell you that much. But there will be some kind of small gathering I hope of family. Just to keep that tradition going.”
Nevertheless, he will be in the kitchen most likely cooking beside his cousin Christopher, who is a sous-chef.
“Not that I profess to be the best chef or celebrity cook out there, but I can hold my own. When we have functions or the holidays come around everyone comes to my house,” Anderson told Us. “He’ll make the sauces because that’s something that I have yet to perfect. He’ll make the sauces and I’ll do all of the other things and he’ll help me along the way.”
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