Life is full of funny and wonderful surprises. While reading Eating Well magazine and enjoying my morning coffee, I discovered an article about Whoopie Pies. Imagine that! A classic Amish and PA Dutch favorite treat of my childhood featured in a national healthy eating magazine. Of course the good folks at Eating Well magazine adjusted the recipe to make it healthier... I'll have to try it and see if the new version is as tasty as the old.
Photo from What's Cooking America
What's a Whoopie Pie, you ask? It's a delicious treat made of two chocolate cake-like cookies and a fluffy white filling. Where did the name come from?
According to Amish legend, when children would find these treats in their lunch bags, they would shout "Whoopie!" (whatscookingamerica.net)
I'd certainly shout "Whoopie" if Curmudgeon put one if my lunch bag!
I also read about an annual Whoopie Pie Festival at the Hershey Farm in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. I had no idea! I just might have to head back to visit in September and enter myself in the Whoopie Pie Eating Contest or the Whoopie Yell Off.
Speaking of festivals, the Kutztown Pennsylvania German Festival is coming up soon (June 28 to July 6). This festival celebrates and recreates the folklife of the Pennsylvania Dutch (German farmers and settlers) of Berks County. The photo below is one of the prize winning quilts from 2007. Click on the quilt to see more of the 2007 winners.
Growing up nearby, attending this festival was an annual summer event. "Eat 'til you ouch" signs hang over many of the food stands. Trust me - that is quite easy to do! The festival features many delicious, traditional PA Dutch foods, including chicken pot pie, schnitz un knepp (dried apples, ham and dumplings), sausages, potato filling, pepper cabbage, chow chow (pickled veggies), milich flitche (milk pie), shoofly pie and birch beer. I grew up eating many of these dishes and introduced Curmudgeon to them when we visited the festival two summers ago. She turned to my mother frequently and asked her while pointing at me, "Does she know how to make this? Can you give her the recipe?"
In addition to the food, the festival features handmade arts and crafts, incredibly beautiful quilts, hex signs, music and dancing, farming tools and implements, and barnyard babies for children to meet.
(Banner, quilt, pickled veggies and hex sign photos above are all from the Kutztown Pennsylvania German Festival website)
Wing Nut's mother is a craftswoman at the festival. She is a seamstress and makes the world's best baby bibs, beautiful aprons, placemats & table runners in a variety of fabrics for every holiday or season, Christmas tree skirts, handy kitchen towels and much more. Her business name is Bib-A-Lot. If you stop by and say hi, tell her the Weed Whackin' Wenches sent you.