Shoo Fly Pie

Several people have asked why Gracie likes shoo-fly pie. Then they ask, “what is it?” Gracie’s father was born in Pennsylvania … Amish country. Shoo-fly pie was his favorite and Gracie loves it too. Here’s one recipe…

2 cups flour
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup shortening
1/s tsp baking soda
Combine these first four ingredients. Reserve 1 cup for crumbs that go on top.
3/4 cup warm water
1/2 cups dark Karo syrup
1/2 tsp baking soda
Mix these next three ingredients with flour mixture to make batter.
Mix the last two ingredients (below) and pour into an unbaked 9′ pie crust.
3/4 cup warm water
3/4 cup dark Karo syrup
Slowly pour batter over top and sprinkle with crumbs.
Bake 50-60 minutes at 375 degrees F.

Bourbon Pecan Torte

This recipe seems like it should be in Book 3, The Bistro Bourbon Mystery, but it isn’t! It is good, though.

1 cup butter, softened
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 eggs
3 cups brown sugar ( I use the Splenda brown sugar)
1 pinch salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup finely chopped pecans

Cook this over medium heat until the butter melts and the sugar dissolves, stirring constantly. Cool slightly!!!
In a large bowl, blend 4 eggs, 2 tablespoons of bourbon, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla. Slowly pour sugar mixture into egg mix, whisking constantly. (Do it slowly and whisk it well or you will have scrambled eggs.) Stir in 6 ounces or so of semi-sweet chocolate chips and 1 cup of chopped pecans.
After this is all mixed, pour this over the batter. You will probably have to push the batter back toward the sides. This is probably enough to fill two pie pans unless you have a really, really deep dish pan.
Bake in preheated oven at 325 degrees for 60 minutes. check the last five minutes. A knife should come out clean.

Serve this with warm with whipped cream. It’s rich!

Million Dollar Fudge

My aunt used to send me this treat for my birthday. She called it Million Dollar Fudge. I’ve adjusted the recipe some, but here it is!

In medium saucepan, combine one jar (7 ounces) of marshmallow cream, 1 1/2 cups sugar, 2/3 cup evaporated milk, 1/4 cup butter or margarine and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Bring this to a full boil, stirring constantly over moderate heat. Boil for five minutes over moderate heat and continue to stir constantly. Remove from heat.
Add one 12-ounce package (2 cups) semi-sweet chocolate morsels and stir until morsels are melted and the mixture is smooth.
Stir in 1/2 cup chopped nuts (pecans) and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Pour into greased 8-inch square pan. Chill until firm. Makes about 2 1/4 lbs.

Shrimp Dip

Here’s another good holiday recipe. Our heroine, Gracie, takes it to the Bistro’s Christmas Eve party in the Bistro Christmas Mystery. It’s actually a recipe I got from my sister-in-law, Alice. We both used to take it to school for Christmas parties. FYI: Crab can be substituted for shrimp. We usually had to make double and triple batches for those parties.

1 large package cream cheese (8 oz. softened)
1/2 cup Mayonnaise
Mix together with mixer until it’s fluffy
1 cup finely diced celery
1 cup diced green onions
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Two 4-ounce cans of shrimp (broken)
Season to taste with salt and pepper. Mix and chill.

Green Tomato Pie

This green tomato pie recipe is featured in the Christmas Mystery. Gracie’s sister-in-law Ellie would make her pie crust from scratch and it would be flaky and wonderful. Gracie and I use store-bought (sorry!). Here’s Green Tomato Pie…

In four cup measuring cup, mix
8 ounce package cream cheese, softened
4 ounces sour cream
4 extra large eggs
enough heavy cream to equal four cups
Season to taste with pepper, salt, turmeric, oregano
In 9-inch unbaked pie crust, sprinkle
4 cups diced green tomatoes (or mix of green and red)
1 cup diced onion
Optional: finally chopped bacon, diced ham, diced sweet peppers

Pour egg mixture over the tomatoes. Sprinkle the top of the mixture with shredded cheese. I like the Mexican mix.
Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes to set the crust, then lower temperature to 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Watch it the last ten minutes and test by inserting a knife.

Bourbon Balls

We had an inquiry about Imogene’s bourbon balls and truffles. Here’s the bourbon ball recipe. Imogene hasn’t shared her truffle one. Note some folks add more bourbon and less orange juice.

1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1 pound (2 cups) vanilla wafer crumbs rolled fine
2 tablespoons cocoa
2 tablespoons Karo syrup or one cup if you like real sweet
1 cup sliced pecans
1 cup orange juice mixed with 1 tablespoon bourbon
Sift sugar and cocoa together. Add all other ingredients; shape into balls. Roll balls in extra powdered sugar. Store in frig, tightly covered. They can be rolled in powdered sugar a second time after an hour or so. Enjoy!

Monster Cookies

At the Bistro’s bakery, opened in the Bourbon book, they bake large quantities. These monster cookies are mentioned in the fourth book. It might be a good one for anyone doing holiday baking (12 to 15 dozen cookies).

Mix the following ingredients together in the order given:
1 dozen eggs
4 cups brown sugar
4 cups white granulated sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 tablespoon corn syrup
8 teaspoons baking powder
1 pound margarine
3 pounds peanut butter
18 cups oatmeal ( 2 lbs, 10 ounces)
Drop mixture by tablespoonful onto cookie sheets. Flatten each cookie. Bake for 12 minutes in 325 degree oven. DON’T OVER BAKE!

Italian Cream Cake

Gracie makes this cake in Book 1, to practice her cake decorating skills. She decorates it with pink roses, but pecan halves and coconut flakes will do.

1 stick margarine
1 cup vegetable shortening
2 cups sugar
5 egg yolks
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla
1 small can (3 oz) flaked coconut
1 cup chopped nutmeats (pecans, because it’s SC)
5 egg whites, stiffly beaten

Cream butter and shortening. Add sugar and beat until smooth. Add egg yolks and beat well. Sift flour with soda. Add dry ingredients alternately w/ buttermilk to the creamed mixture. Stir in vanilla and nuts. Fold in egg whites. Pour into three greased and floured 8-inch layer cake pans. Bake at 350 degrees until done. Now Ellie uses a cream cheese icing recipe, but honestly I’d just buy cream cheese icing and then sprinkle the coconut flakes all over the top. A few pecan halves work too.

Persimmon Cookies

This recipe was featured in the August 2020 Newsletter. Persimmons are an orange fruit that grow on trees and are native to North American from Florida to Connecticut and as far west as Iowa and Texas. Native Americans ate them through the winter. Deer love them. They need to be given time to ripen thoroughly after picking.  Since the fruit can be a little gritty unless properly prepared, we used to get persimmon pulp from a store in Bean Blossom, Indiana.

4 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup butter
2 1/2 scant cups sugar
 5 eggs
1 1/2 cup persimmon pulp
1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix wet ingredients together, then slowly add the dry ingredients. 
After the dough is mixed well, scoop out tablespoons worth of dough onto cookie sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately ten minutes.

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