Proud of East Texas: Lori's Eats & Sweets

GILMER, TX (KLTV) - A perfect piece of yam pie from Gilmer, the yam capital, is about as tasty as a pie can get.

Now you may think this looks like a sweet potato pie, and maybe in other places, it would be, but in Gilmer, home of the Gilmer Yamboree, it's a yam pie.

"In Gilmer we just say yam. We hardly ever say sweet potato."

A recent magazine article in Texas Farm and Home on the Pie Trail across Texas gave Lori Metcalf, owner of Lori's Eats and Sweets, high marks for her yam pies, and why not? Lori baked hundreds of mouth-watering yam pies over the years.

"I've been making pies for a long time."

Lori grew up helping her mother with wedding cakes, so she was exposed to the catering side of the food business early on. Jobs in public and school cafeterias gave her added experience.

Lori opened Lori's Eats and Sweets  12 years ago, three years ago she built an additional kitchen for catering.

"I was already catering a little bit and it just grew and grew."

Lori still serves lunch at her restaurant, although she's on the road a lot with her catering.

"We go everywhere, everywhere that someone needs a party."

The sweet potato or yam tarts are especially popular during Gilmer's Yamboree in the fall.

Tart forms make producing those orders for hundreds of tarts much easier.

There's no secret to Lori's famous yam pies and tartlets, just fresh ingredients and consistency.

"Each recipe has two sticks of butter in it."

Pies competing in the annual Yamboree pie contest are very basic, without spices.

"They want it potatoes, sugar, milk, eggs, butter."

However, what most people prefer to eat has some additions.

"Vanilla makes everything good and then, of course, there's brown sugar."

Lori always offers various yam dishes in her restaurant during the Yamboree. Sometimes it's pie or tarts or recipes she's developed such as yam brownies.

But for the food purist, the 'sweet potato-yam pie is the star of the Texas pie trail.

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