We went to the Lifeway Store at Cool Springs for Todd Starnes’ book signing. Todd is a self-described gun-toting, chicken-eating son of a Baptist. I came home with an autographed copy of Dispatches from Bitter America and started reading right away. I came across Todd’s account of dining at the Red Arrow Diner in Manchester, NH. As he finished his cheese burger, the waitress asked if he’d like desert. “Sure. How about some sweet potato pie?”
“Honey, that’s a southern dessert. You’re in New Hampshire. “
“What would you suggest?”
“How about some whoopee?”
“Excuse me?” he asked, nearly choking on his burger. After she whacked him with the menu, she explained whoopee is a pie.
I turned to my Yankee husband and asked if he’d ever had one and exactly what kind of pie it is. He explained it is sort of like the southern delicacy (t.-in.-c.), Moon Pie, chocolate cake with a fluffy filling. He told me his mom made them for him when he was a kid. Rose LeBlanc is 92 and living in Christian Care Center. She would share her recipe with me if dementia hadn’t taken that memory. So I’ve been on the web searching and reading recipes. I found one originating with someone’s grandmother from Maine, one from Epicurious, one from Food Network and several others. I decided to combine, add, change and come up with a recipe that read like a winner to me. We enjoyed them and hope you will too.
1 stick butter
1 cup sugar (some recipes call for brown sugar)
1 large egg
1 cup buttermilk (some recipes call for milk)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon each soda, baking powder, salt (some recipes only baking soda and salt)
½ cup cocoa (some recipes call for 5 tablespoons)
Preheat oven to 350* Grease 1 large cookie sheets.
Whisk together flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, salt. In a small bowl stir buttermilk and vanilla together. Beat together butter and sugar for about 3 minutes, until pale and fluffy; add egg. Alternate adding small batches of flour mixture and milk mixture, scrapping sides of the bowl as you mix. Spoon ¼ cup mounded batter on cookie sheet. Bake for 12 minutes, or until cake bounces back when touched. Set on rack to cool.
• 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
• 1 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
• 2 cups marshmallow cream
• 1 teaspoon vanilla
Beat butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, add marshmallow cream and vanilla and whip until blended.
Cool pies and frost the flat side and top with the flat side of another pie.
Jerry says these taste authentic. He remembers the whoopee served on special occasions. I think they are very rich and delicious and worth the effort. Go easy on how many you eat, you could go into a sugar coma.
I recommend Todd’s book as well!