Amish Shoofly Pie
Authentic,homemade Amish shoofly pie is a rare find. It seems the farther west you go, the less common shoofly pie. I don’t see it often in Indiana Amish settlements and points west, but it is still relatively common in Pennsylvania’s Amish communities. So I pounced when I saw a shoofly pie at a bake sale over the weekend in Pearisburg, Virginia’s Amish settlement. It was a classic “wet bottom” shoo-fly pie. As the name implies the top is firm with a bottom layer of oh-so-good ooey, gooey, molasses filling. And in Pearisburg they make the molasses themselves in their own “sorghum shack.” This is a view of the Amish community from high a hillside. See the tall smokestack? That is the sorghum shack. And see the amazing pie below? That’s the shoo-fly pie I bought (half-eaten…SIGH).
There are different recipes for this classic, in some more midwestern Amish settlements a more “cakey” pie is preferred, in Pennsylvania, you have a preference for classic “wet bottom” versions with the gooey molasses settling to the bottom and a crumb top to the top!
Ready to try shoo-fly pie yourself? Here’s a recipe from the Amish Cook’s Baking Book.
Makes one 9-inch pie
1 9-inch pie crust (homemade or store-bought)
1 cup molasses
2/3 cup boiling water
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
3/4 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 crumb mixture 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.