I recently attended the "Founder's Day" celebration in the quaint little hamlet of Germantown, Ohio and stumbled into a classic Amish shoofly pie recipe. At the festival, which featured hot air balloons and bands, there was a pie booth with some local ladies selling slices of the typical fair fare: cherry, apple, and...shoofly? Yes, cherry, apple and others like it are staples at festivals and fairs. But shoofly? Not something you find much here in the Midwest. So I snagged a slice and was not disappointed. It was a classic Lancaster-style shoofly pie with a layer of molasses underneath a crumb-type topping. Ah, what a treat. It was the last slice which I heartily ate. The woman who made it said it was an old family recipe. She was supposed to email me the recipe, but I never heard from her (some people don't wish to part with old family recipes!). If there had been two slices I would have eaten one and taken the other home to reverse engineer the recipe.
Shoofly pies from Pennsylvania tender to be more moist than their drier, crumblier midwestern cousins. But both are delicious. Some variations in shoofly pies can be found. I've seen "chocolate shoofly pie" in several Mennonite bakeries.
Like molasses? Read about the Great Molasses Flood of 1919 here.
Here is a classic Amish shoofly pie recipe.
- 1 9-inch pie crust (homemade or store-bought)
- 1 cup molasses
- ⅔ cup boiling water
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 3½cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup sugar
- ¾ cup shortening, softened
- Dash of salt
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- In a large bowl, combine the molasses, boiling water, and baking soda.
- Pour the mixture into the unbaked pie shell.
- To make the topping: In a large bowl, mix the flour with the sugar, shortening, and salt.
- Spread this on top of the molasses mixture in the pie shell.
- Bake until the center of the pie is set, about 45 minutes.
- Cool on a wire rack or windowsill until the pie is firm, about 45 minutes.
- Store any leftovers in a sealed cake safe.
- The pie will keep for about 5 days