Sunday, March 29, 2009

Shoo-Fly Pie

Back in the saddle again.

I love it when my pie crust turns out right. It's the most satisfying feeling. This is what it's supposed to look like before you add the liquids:

And in the pie pan:

Aaaaahhhh! Much better.

Shoo-fly pie holds a precious place in the Baker family (see, I'm part bona fide Baker!). My Great Grandpa Baker was Pennsylvania Dutch. And Shoo-Fly Pie is Pennsylvania Dutch "cuisine". One of Grandpa Baker's favorites. At our first Baker Family Reunion, in 1981, we had a Shoo-Fly Pie baking contest. Grandpa Baker was the judge. He was pretty picky about desserts. I don't have a picture of him testing the pies, but I do have this picture (my favorite of him)--

Edited (months later) to add--here's the picture of Grandpa Baker testing pies/waxing philosophical. I think his gesture is indicating that the crust should be just so. Or that the filling should be this thick. Or something. Thanks Auntie Vickie!

Hee hee. I love that guy.

The Pie Queen, who is not from the Baker line, warned me about making this pie. She said something like, "It's a sticky, treacly mess. You won't like it." (HA, "treacly", I kill myself...)

Apparently, there's no written version of the recipe to which Grandpa Baker compared all others. What we do have is his daughter Jane's recipe, which I altered a little.

Baker Family Shoo-Fly Pie *click here for printable version*
makes 1 9" pie

For the liquid part:
1/2 cup molasses
1/2 cup hot water
1/2 tsp. baking soda

For the crumb part:
1/4 cup cold butter
1 cup brown sugar
1-1/2 cups flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. (heaping) freshly ground nutmeg

Stir liquid part together.

Combine dry ingredients and work in the butter to make crumbs.

Into an unbaked 9" pie shell, put crumbs and liquid in alternating layers with crumbs on bottom and top. Bake in 450 degree oven for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 and bake for another 20 minutes.

I finally found organic brown sugar that packs. In fact, I think it packs better than regular brown sugar. I like it.

On this day, there was nothing to shoo away. The only thing flying was snowflakes (?!March 29!?).

At any rate, I've waited years to say it, and now I shall say it with gusto: MOM! YOU WERE WRONG! Phew. That may be the only time I ever get to say that. Felt good. We loved this pie. All of us. Even the kids. I added more spices than the original recipe called for. And I used butter in place of shortening. Is that the difference between yucky and yummy? Maybe. Served it with a little vanilla ice cream (although whipped cream would be just as good, if not better, atop this pie). It was like gingerbread pie. It's stick-to-your-ribs-y. Not a summer pie. With the snow outside it was almost like Christmas. Delicious.

TGIP Rating--Shoo-Fly Pie--KEEPER--Don't change a thing! Make it for Christmas Eve.

Next up: I'm going to see if I can get Mangled Dave to come over and teach me how to make Boozy Bread Pudding.

P.S. I hope you noticed the printable recipe link above. That's something new I added! I've also added it to previous blog posts where I posted recipes.

P.P.S. Bill, I have a project for you. You know those pie boxes that were on Pushing Daisies? With the sliding lids and the wire/handle system? That were deep enough to carry a pie with a high meringue? I need some.


pinky said...

Grandpa Baker must be proud!! And Aunt Dorothy and Aunt Jane too! First of all that you MADE one - and secondly that everyone LIKED it!! I think I might like this one too from the looks of it. I do like molasses-gingerbread, brown sugar sorts of things...I think you're onto something with your recipe alterations!

Bill said...

Dang it! I was going to make some pie boxes as a birthday surprise for you. Seriously. But since you're asking and the surprise is now over I'll wrangle your help. I need dimensions of your pie pans.

Also, I have been trying to get the same picture used from the show for the lids. I have screen shots I'll email you. That is, if you want the same thing. You can send me your own "branded" picture if you want.

April Fossen said...

Yay! Bill, you are awesome. I'll take some measurements and email them to you. And, yeah, I want the picture that's on the boxes in the show.

Miriam Latour said...

Mangled Dave gave me his recipe several years ago for Bread Pudding. It's a family favorite now! I have a funny story about it... but I don't want to post it in public. Ask me some time.

Shoo-fly Pie looks so yum! I'm going to make this one for sure. Molasses is like nectar from the gods.

Kristin said...

I'm confused. Is pie day Sunday? Or is it Monday or Tuesday? Which day is pie day?

April Fossen said...

Whichever day I decide to bake is pie day. :)

The Divine Miss M said...

Hi - you don't know know me, but I found your blog by searching for "Pushing Daisies" with the term "pie box." If your friend Bill makes you the pie boxes, please tell him he should make extras to sell. I would kill for one (and would also pay for one if he makes them!). Please contact me if he's interested in selling -

Bill said...

@April - They're done!

@The Devine Miss M - I'm not interested in selling. (I make things because I enjoy it - it's kind of therapeutic - and I fear turning it into a job will take away the enjoyment factor.) But keep an eye out on my blog in the next couple of weeks where I'll be posting the plans/instructions as well as the image for the top and you can make some yourself or have a craftsman who does do this for a living make it for you.

April Fossen said...

Heeheeheeheehee!!! I'm so excited!

Vickie said...

Your Shoo-fly Pie is beautiful, and would surely pass the Grandpa Baker test! I would like to share with you the Baker original recipe to add to your repertory. Watch your Gmail.