Leave it to the Mennonites and Amish to have a repertoire of tasty, fairly healthy and very simple and inexpensive foods. Many of their cultural dishes are worth learning to make and then improving upon by substituting healthier ingredients.
This classic dessert is called: Shoo-fly Pie. It is especially good to make if you are wanting a sweet treat and are needing an iron boost. Using organic molasses in the dish provides 20 – 30% of your daily iron value, depending on how large of a piece you eat (1 Tbs of organic molasses contains approx. 15% of your daily iron value plus 730mg potassium).
Family of 5 – $2.05
Serving – $.40
*prices are approximate and will vary by where one lives and other factors.
1 ½ cups whole wheat flour – Fresh ground flour from white wheat berries is best.
½ tsp salt – Sea salt.
¼ cup butter or coconut oil – Coconut oil is one of the healthiest oils available and if kept at less than 77 degrees, will be solid and act similar to butter in making the pie crust. Coconut oil can sometimes be found with other oils or in specialty and health food markets.
1/8 cup water
½ Tbs rice or apple cider vinegar – White vinegar is good for cleaning, but not so good for cooking. Find rice or apple cider vinegar near the white vinegar.
¾ cup organic molasses – Organic molasses can be found in specialty and health food markets or ordered online (try Vitacost ). Using regular molasses greatly reduces the nutritional content of the desert.
½ cup hot water
½ tsp baking soda – Baking soda is usually found with other baking products.
1 egg – Brown, free range eggs if you can.
¾ cup whole wheat flour – Fresh ground flour from white wheat berries is best.
½ cup cane sugar – Look for sugar in the raw, demerara, sucanat, or cane sugar. They can usually be found near white sugar. White, refined sugar is one of the least healthiest foods on the market and there are so many better options. You could also try making this pie with honey, but would need to cut back on the molasses and water by ¼ cup each.
¼ cup butter or coconut oil – Coconut oil is one of the healthiest oils available and if kept at less than 76 degrees, will be solid and act similar to butter in making the pie crust. Coconut oil can sometimes be found with other oils or in specialty and health food markets.
¼ tsp salt – Sea salt.
- Make the pie crust 1 hour before making the filling and baking the pie.
- Mix 1 ½ cups whole wheat flour with the ½ tsp of salt.
- Measure the ¼ cup butter or coconut oil into a bowl and mix it together with your hands. It should seem like crumbs when you are done, although the coconut oil variation may be a little smoother, depending on how warm the room and your hands are.
- Fill a liquid measuring cup with 1/8 cup water, add the ½ Tbs vinegar to it and stir. Then add this liquid combination to the flour and butter / oil mixture. Mix with a spoon or your hands and form into a ball.
- Refrigerate for 1 hour.
- After 1 hour, preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Make the bottom layer of the pie: measure ¾ cup molasses and pour into a large bowl, measure ½ cup hot water into the bowl, and then stir in ½ tsp baking soda. Be sure you have a large bowl, as the baking soda will cause the whole bowl of molasses and water to foam up quite a bit. Fun to watch, not fun to clean up if using too small a bowl.
- Beat the egg in a small bowl, then beat or whisk it into the molasses mixture.
- For the top layer of the pie: measure ¾ cup flour and pour into a medium bowl, measure ½ cup cane sugar and pour into the bowl, then mix in the butter or coconut oil with hands. It should seem like crumbs when mixed.
- Bring out the pie crust dough ball from the refrigerator.
- Press or roll it out flat between two sheets of wax or parchment paper and put it into a 9 inch pie pan.
- Pour the molasses mixture into the pie pan on top of the crust.
- Gently crumble the topping layer over the molasses mixture in the pie pan. Don’t press it down / don’t press on it.
- Bake for 15 minutes at 400 degrees, then drop to 350 degrees and cook for another 30 to 40 minutes. Knife test the pie at 30 minutes to see if set (knife should come out clean, not wet).
Do you like what you see here? Did you try the recipe? Would you like more healthy, simple and cheap recipes for your family?
My eBook: Simple, Healthy, Cheap! A Simple Life’s Guide To Home Economics: Beginning Cooking, will be available in a few weeks. This recipe is from the Intermediate Cooking book, which will follow it up a few months later.
Want a healthy cookbook now? I have found a great eBook, Eat Good For Life that is worth a try for only $4.95!