Wednesday, October 17, 2007

A Little Taste of Maine #1



This is the first of a planned series of short posts about my favorite 'regional' foods, most of which contributed greatly to my decision to return here for retirement. The series is a result of suggestions from SWMBO and a very close friend, seems both of them are of the opinion that I can insert thoughts of food into every conversation. Of course, after thinking about it for a couple minutes before my thoughts drifted off toward what we were having for supper, I was forced to concede that they were right. I LOVE to cook, and eating is like a passion with me. I can get lost in cooking a delicious meal and even enjoy my own meals more than most I partake of. Cooking has always come rather naturally to me, as has eating. It seems I've always got something yummy on the brain.
I'm going to start off with one of Maine's best known and most loved comfort foods. Mainers sometimes say that they grew up eating whoopie pies from birth. In Maine, the whoopie pie is more like a cake than a pie or a cookie. About the size of a large hamburger, they're so big that some folks have to eat them in more than one sitting. A big glass of milk or bottle of Moxie is my normal beverage when consuming this calorie laden treat. A whoopie pie is like a sandwich, but made with two soft, hubcap shaped, cake-like outer halves with a fluffy white filling.
Traditional whoopies pies are made with vegetable shortening, not butter. The original and most commonly made whoopie pie is chocolate, but I prefer pumpkin flavored pies to any other. Every Mom and Pop store, grocery store, and many dining establishments have these wonderful items on offer. Most are made by the stores, restaurant chefs, or small local bakeries. These, and homemade, are the only really acceptable pies to me, and others must be of the same mindset, as most large bakery attempts to horn in on this lucrative market have been abject failures. The lady whose photo above shows her displaying her wares, is an exception to this rule. Although small by most standards, her bakery is large for a Maine business. Her pies are to die for and are often sold out almost as fast as they hit the shelves. When you attempt to eat one at a single snack, you'd better be REALLY ravenous!! They're huge, even by Maine standards.
If you'd like to try her pies, or are just curious about this treat, her web-site can be found at Wicked Whoopies. The site gives a short history of her enterprise as well as instructions for ordering her pies, if so inclined. Her bakery is named for her two kids, Isabella and Maxx and is pronounced 'izzamax'. She's a regular guest on a local talk show called '207' and when on she always makes a new variety and they post the recipe on the show's blog page. If you decide to visit her site, I hope you're as impressed as I am with her products. I avoid commercialism, but these are so good I couldn't resist sharing.
So now you have a 'taste' of what will be a theme for my posts until I can get back to my old self. Until next 'meal', take care.

Postscript:
A little chat with the aforementioned close friend has made me realize that I should have included a recipe with this post. Other flavors are obtained by simply altering the 'pie shell' ingredients to produce the desired flavor. Enjoy!!

Wicked Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

PIE SHELL INGREDIENTS:

1 15oz can of pumpkin
2 large eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
2 cups brown sugar (firmly packed)
2 tablespoons molasses
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
3 cups all-purpose flour (heaping)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Beat pumpkin, eggs, oil, and brown sugar together until fluffy. Combine dry ingredients together.
Then add molasses and dry ingredients to your mix until well blended.

Scoop large rounded spoonfuls of batter onto a greased cookie sheet and space at least 2" apart.
Bake for 10-13 min.

CREAM FILLING:

Ingredients:

6oz. of cream cheese
1/2 stick unsalted butter (softened)
2 cups confectioners sugar
3 heaping tablespoons of fluff
2 teaspoons of water

Directions:

Add all ingredients in a bowl and beat until fluffy.
When whoopie shells are cooled, place a scoop of filling between two shells.
Wicked good!

12 comments:

Mies said...

YUMMMMMM!!! Now your talkin'...Looked at the site and ALL looked good, not a flavor I wouldn't like, though I kinda lean toward the traditional chocolate...but vanilla bean and chocolate chip are real tempting...Wicked Whoopies..good sinful type name, sinfully delicious that is....Okay, I'm hungry now, off to lunch...
Thanks for sharing and can't wait to see what's next on the menu...

The Guy Who Writes This said...

It beats the heck out of our oysters.

Auntie said...

I'm with you on that, Guy. Oysters suck, as does Lutefisk, another imported delicacy. I would take a Whoopie Pie anyday over those!

Anonymous said...

I've just put on 5lbs looking at Whoopie Pies. They look very good and very BAD all at the same time.
Can't wait for the next meal. Thank you

Brother Tim said...

Man, do those sound good! Thanks for adding the recipe. I printed it out, and am planning on giving it a try. I suffer from the same afflictions as you ---- cooking and eating.

Judd Corizan said...

Hi Mike:

Congratulations! Your post of Sepyember19, 2007 “A New Day Dawns” has been selected as our Post of the Day on “The Rising Blogger”. It is a site that awards posts, not blogs. We will email your winning badge to post in your sidebar and all our info, if you contact us with your email address. To encourage your readers to comment on your award, it helps if you make the first comment on our post about your blog, yourself. We ask winners to nominate a post favorite of a fellow blogger. Call it “paying it forward”. Neither is a requirement. You have won this award because we truly feel you deserve it. To reach “The Rising Blogger” site:

http://therisingblogger.blogspot.com

Have a great week!
Judd Corizan
The Rising Blogger

Princess Extraordinaire said...

I wanna make whoopie...

FENICLE said...

Yum indeed! I've always wanted to visit Maine - know I have good reasons!!!

Cecily said...

wow... I'm not sure if I've ever heard of these before, but I'm seriously thinking about giving that recipe ago. If I can just work out the difference between North American and Australian cup measures I should be right. (I think I have a conversion chart somewhere!)

Patricia said...

Yum. I printed out that recipe. Need to pick up some ingredients, then I'll give it a go. Thanks, Mike.
What else is on the menu?
Lets see if I can get this to print. I have posted before, but lost one on this subject some days ago. Probably need to be retrained on my lunch hour.

Cherie said...

Oh yum - I think these will made here in Oregon by the end of the month - by my daughters and me. Thanks for the newsy tidbits and the recipe, Mike!

EE said...

We call those "Bad Boys" here, but I think I like "Wicked Whoopies" better:)