pie on the fly

Shoo Fly Pie Plate – total kitch but would be fun to own!

One of my grandmothers was Pennsylvania German.  So I have a dash of Lancaster County Cooking in my gene coding.

Today I thought “Shoo-Fly Pie”.

Shoo-Fly Pie is a molasses based pie.  I have seen some home cooks now cooking it in a chocolate crust, and well, to me, taste-wise that might work with pecan pies, but would be serious sweet confusion in a Shoo-Fly Pie.

My pie is different because I add a little spice to it – otherwise it is too bland.  I am also picky about purchasing a Shoo-Fly Pie, because a lot of the time unless it is a really good baker it is a gelatinous bland blob in a pie plate with crumbs on top.

Now I committed a cardinal sin today and did not watch my pie, so it sort of exploded on top.  That however, could be covered up with a piping of unsweetened or lightly honey sweetened whipped cream if I was serving it for company, but I think once I slice it, the only one who will be bothered if it is not perfect is me.

Today another issue I had was I did not feel like rolling out my own crust so I used a  graham cracker crust I had in the cupboard to use it up.  The flavors will work, but there is nothing better than a traditional homemade flakey pie crust.

Also, use a deep dish pie plate, and if you use a pre-made pie shell, spend the extra money for a deep dish pre-made shell.

Shoo-Fly Pie

1 unbaked deep dish pie shell (9 inches)

1 cup flour (regular flour with no additives, preferably organic)

1 cup brown sugar (dark is best, light will do)

1 tablespoon butter

1 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 cup hot water

1 egg

1 cup molasses

dash Mace

dash Cinnamon

dash Allspice

First pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees.

In a large bowl mix together flour and brown sugar.  Add dashes of spices referenced above, lightest dash should be allspice.  Use a pastry cutter and cut in the butter.  Keep on “cutting” until the mixture is fine crumbs and uniform.  Take 1/2 cup (dry cup measure) of crumbs and put aside in a little bowl.

In another bowl first dissolve the baking soda in hot water – not boiling, just hot tap  water.  Add molasses and beat.  Beat in the egg.  Mix well, it will be flat looking yet sort of fluffy. (Not like meringue where it stands up, just a fluffy-frothy appearance)

Take your ooey gooey wet and pour into the large bowl of crumbs and beat it in.

Pour mixture into pie shell.

A shoo-fly pie recipe found on the web

Top with the crumbly mixture I told you to put aside in a little bowl.  Spread the crumbs evenly over the top by hand but *DO NOT* try to smooth out unless you want your crumbs disappearing like they were swallowed by quick sand.

Place on a baking tray lined with parchment and place *carefully* in oven – the hardest thing about making a Shoo-Fly Pie other than watching it so it doesn’t “explode” is getting it in the oven without sloshing it out of the pie shell.

Bake for about 35 minutes.  Cool on a rack a couple of hours before serving.  Refrigerate left-overs.

Today I ignored my pie as I was speaking to a friend on the phone.  It exploded.  I put it back together and I am not thrilled, but if you look at photos of Shoo-Fly pies on the Internet, exploding is common.

If you want to do a sweet crust or a graham cracker or a vanilla wafer crust with this kind of pie, that works.  But trust me if you use another recipe, ignore the ones that call for chocolate.  It is too wrong a taste, and I say that as a chocolate fanatic – I love chocolate, but not in Shoo-Fly Pie.

2 thoughts on “pie on the fly

  1. I have a Pennsylvania Dutch Cookbook I bought about 20 years ago in Lancaster County . I have made this pie and it tasts as good as the ones you can buy in the Amish Farmer’s Markets, and it’s “easy as pie!”
    Flour Sugar and Butter make the crumbs the rest is the pie filling which goes in the pastry shell which is a separate recipe:

    Shoo-Fly- Pie ( Old Lehigh County Recipie)
    1 1/2 CUPS OF FLOUR
    1 CUP FIRMLY PACKED BROWN SUGAR
    1/4 CUP OF BUTTER OR LARD
    1/2 CUP LIGHT MOLASSES
    1/2 CUP HOT WATER
    1/2 TEASPOON BAKING SODA
    COMBINE FLOUR AND SUGAR. CUT IN BUTTER WITH PASTRY BLENDER OR TWO KNIVES UNTIL CRUMBLY. SET ASIDE. MIX TOGETHER MOLASES, WATER,AND BAKING SODA. DIVIDE EVENLY BETWEEN two PASTRY LINED 8 IN PANS. TOP EACH WITH HALF THE CRUMBS. BaKE AT 450 DEGREES10 MIN. REDUCE HEAT TO 350 AND BAKE ABOUT 20 MIN LONGER OR UNTIL FIRM.

    The Pastry is : 3 cups sifted flout,1 tsp salt,1 cup of lard or shortening, 5 tblsp cold water.
    Sift flour and salt together. Cut in lard with pastry blender until pieces are size of small peaas. Gradually sprinkle water over mixture mixing lightly with fork after each addition. Add only enough water to hold mixture together. Roll out on floured surface and fit to pie pan. DON’T stretch pastry when fitting to pan as this will cause shrinkage in finished product. Use as directed in pie recipes. Makes two to three 1 crust pies or one two crust pie.

Comments are closed.