My mother used to make a wonderful Pennsylvania Dutch dessert, her wet bottom shoo-fly pie. The “wet bottom” part of the pie refers to the gooey molasses layer that coats the crust. A spice cake sits on the wet bottom and the whole thing is covered with a crumbly topping. Easy to make, this “Schmeckt gut” – tastes good!
I hadn’t made a shoo-fly pie in ages, so when my talented food-writing friend, Rachael, mentioned a pie brigade coming up to celebrate National Pie Day, I was in. In fact, I jumped at the chance to break my diet and share a piece of pie with my readers.
National Pie Day will be celebrated January 23, which coincides with Rachael’s birthday. Happy Birthday, dear Rachael! I hope you will be digging into a birthday pie soon and wish you were right here to enjoy this one…
TIP: I buy pre-made pie crusts from the deli section of the grocery store, not being much of a pie crust fan. Many folks find this sacrilegious, so feel free to make your own homemade crust.
- 1 nine-inch pie crust, unbaked
- 1 egg yolk
- ½ cup unsulphured molasses
- ¾ cup boiling water
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup all-purpose unbleached white flour
- ½ cup brown sugar, lightly packed
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- ⅛ teaspoon ground ginger
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Place the pie crust in a glass or ceramic pie plate, flute edges and set aside.
- Beat the egg yolk in a small bowl. Add the molasses and mix together.
- Add the baking soda to the boiling water and stir until the soda dissolves. Add to the egg-molasses mixture.
- Combine the dry ingredients in a medium-sized bowl. Add the butter and use your fingers to work into large crumbs.
- Pour the liquid mixture into the fluted pie crust.Sprinkle crumbs evenly on top.
- Bake for 10 minutes at 400 degrees, then lower heat to 325 degrees and bake for another 30 minutes.