I collect recipe boxes and received one originally from a kitchen in Pennsylvania. Filled with recipes from the 1940’s to 1970’s, I ventured into the world of Pennsylvania Dutch cooking.
- 3 cups cornmeal
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 and one half teaspoons salt
- 1 and one half cups milk
- One half cup water
- 1 beaten egg, if desired
- 1 onion, finally chopped, if desired
Updated version: I substituted three green onions for yellow onions and added a four ounce can of diced green chilies and one fourth teaspoon black pepper.
Traditional: drop by teaspoons into hot oil and fry until evenly brown. Using a slotted spoon, drain and dry on paper towels. Can be served plain or, if using the regular recipe, serve with honey or syrup.
Cookie Sheet: Drop spoonful of dough on parchment covered cookie sheet and bake at 450 degrees for 5-10 minutes. I liked the crispy texture.
Muffins: Spray or oil the inside of a muffin pan and fill two-thirds full with batter. Bake at 375 degrees for 10-15 minutes.
Montgomery Pie was the first recipe that caught my attention. The woman had several recipes, each with only a slight variation. I researched recipe books and the Internet and found it was actually a variety of Shoo Fly Pie. Shoo fly Pies were known for their sticky sweet molasses which attracted flies as it cooled; so the name.
The Montgomery variety has the same molasses base but with an addition of lemon or lime juice and a cake like topping. As I followed the recipe, I realized the bottom layer was watery mix of molasses and lemon juice. I rechecked my sources and felt I was on the right path.
The topping was a thick cake-like batter that didn’t mix with the watery bottom, so I dropped globes of batter into the liquid. However, as I carefully placed the pie into my pre-heated oven, the molasses bath dripped over onto the bottom of the oven.
I managed to clean up most of the mess before the smoke alarm sounded. The smell of burnt molasses filled my kitchen, but I was determined and finished the baking.
The final product had a cake like topping which covered a mass of gluey-like molasses on the bottom.
Definitely a treat for someone who appreciates molasses.
Coffee Cake: Grandma Smith 1950’s
- 1 cup strong coffee
- 1 egg
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup baking molasses
- Three fourths cup butter & lard (I used three-fourths cup butter)
- 1 cup raisins (omit or use two cups)
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon and cloves
- 1 teaspoon (baking) soda
- 3 cups flour
Beat the butter until light and fluffy; beat in the brown sugar and then egg. Add coffee and molasses alternately with the dry ingredients. Add raisins and mix well. Pour into a 9×13 greased pan. Bake at 350 degrees for about thirty minutes. Cool and cut into squares; top with whipped cream.
- 2 eggs
- 4 cups bread crumbs
- One half envelope Lipton onion soup
- 1 lb. Polish sausage
- 1 cup popcorn (uncooked)
Bake at 375 degrees for 3 hours. When three hours are up, get the hell out of the kitchen, because that popcorn is going to blow the ass off the turkey.
I haven’t tried this recipe, don’t plan to do so and recommend that you don’t either.
Ann Marie Bezayiff received her BA and MEd from the University of Washington in Seattle. She is an author, blogger, columnist and speaker. Her columns, “From the Olive Orchard” and “Recycled Recipes from Vintage Boxes”, appear in newspapers, newsletters and on Internet sites. Ann Marie has also demonstrated her recipes on local television. Currently she divides her time between Western Maryland and Texas.