Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Brainstorming - American Regional Classic Desserts


Recommended Posts

woo hoo - starting a new job after a year of unemployment! the concept is 'american regional classics' - and yes, that's kind of vague :blink: my chef describes the menu as containing foods that remind you of things you ate when you were growing up - stuff you ordered at your local luncheonette, stuff your mom made, stuff that reminds you specifically of where you grew up. not necessarily retro - and not kitsch either: fried chicken, deviled eggs, green chili, chinese spare ribs, red velvet cake, etc. doing desserts this way should be a blast - i'm already thinking about how to make the perfect Ho-Ho!

here's my question, then - what do you think of when you think of the desserts you grew up with? maybe store-bought things that were only sold in your area (like Moonpies, or Tastycakes)? or maybe something your mom or grandmother made & you loved to pieces? recipes are welcome, if you'd like to share, but even more than that i'm looking for ideas, memories, stories - anything you've got! :laugh:

Link to post
Share on other sites

Pretzels and ice cream -- definitely regional as most people I mention it to think I'm whacked. But it's great -- the crunch, the salt, the cream, especially as it melts because of the pretzel salt... I'm already back sitting around grandma's table stirring the bowl with the pretzel rods (which also served as the spoon) to make the ice cream the consistency of soft serve... :wub:

Edited to add: I grew up in southern NJ... This was also popular in eastern/southern PA.

Edited by SweetSide (log)
Cheryl, The Sweet Side
Link to post
Share on other sites

It would help if you mention where you are..... that'd get people in your area thinking about what they remember.

American classic - to me that means fudge cakes, ice cream, and of course, apple pie. But then, what would I know? :wink:

Link to post
Share on other sites

Buttermilk pie

Lemon Chess pie

Blackberry cobbler

Strawberry Shortcake (sweet biscuit, please-no dumb pound cake)

Any double crust fruit pie

Strawberry-Rhubarb Compote w/ ice cream

Boston Creme Pie

Mocha Eclairs (Ok, Grandma was a terrific baker)

Tapioca Pudding with fresh apricots

Link to post
Share on other sites

well, i'm in the western states, but we're actually interested in regional desserts from all over the country. so desserts that i remember from growing up on the jersey shore will be up there on the menu right next to the one's remembered by the texan sous chef :-)

Link to post
Share on other sites
well, i'm in the western states, but we're actually interested in regional desserts from all over the country. so desserts that i remember from growing up on the jersey shore will be up there on the menu right next to the one's remembered by the texan sous chef :-)

Cool, where? I'm from the shore as well with my post of the pretzels and ice cream. Point Pleasant area... Home of the orange and vanilla twist custard soft serve on the boardwalk. Ice cream was our main dessert!

Edited by SweetSide (log)
Cheryl, The Sweet Side
Link to post
Share on other sites

point pleasant - cool! i grew up in long branch, where the boardwalk WAS the social scene of the town! my big memory is on italian ice - served in those little paper cups that would turn into soggy mush by the time you got to the bottom of the ice? i remember flattening the cup to make a point at one hand, and just drinking off the melted lemony, sugary slush on the bottom :biggrin:

Link to post
Share on other sites

I grew up on Long Island in New York state. The desert memories go like this: deep dish peach pie, grape pie, apple pie made with honey rather than sugar, chocolate ice cream with a little of my mother's black coffee poured over, raspberry whip (which involved pureed raspberries, egg whites and something else) strawberries and cream, and, of course, Jello. :raz:

Almost forgot, My T Fine cooked chocolate pudding with nuts, tapioca pudding served with a dollop of nice tart HOMEMADE jelly, and anything from the Seaford Bakery :wub:

Edited 'cause I almost forgot.

Edited by judiu (log)

"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

Link to post
Share on other sites
point pleasant - cool! i grew up in long branch, where the boardwalk WAS the social scene of the town! my big memory is on italian ice - served in those little paper cups that would turn into soggy mush by the time you got to the bottom of the ice? i remember flattening the cup to make a point at one hand, and just drinking off the melted lemony, sugary slush on the bottom  :biggrin:

Off thread... but yeah... to the boardwalk, the squashed italian ice cups, frozen custard... :wub: Good luck bringing back all those memories, whatever they may be, for the patrons!

Cheryl, The Sweet Side
Link to post
Share on other sites

Banana pudding.

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I am orginally from Alabama:

Moonpies (chocolate, vanilla and banana) and an RC Cola with peanuts

Pecan pie

Fried peach and apple pies

Lady Baltimore Cake

Coconut cake with seven minute icing

Coconut cream pie

Black bottom pie

Boston cream pie

Little Debbie's oatmeal creme pie and raisin creme pies

Dairy Queen Peanut Buster Parfait

Howard Johnson's peppermint ice cream

Caramel cake

peanut brittle

Edited by Swisskaese (log)
Link to post
Share on other sites

ooooo, moon pies :wub: i'm loving the idea of making those from scratch! never had a banana one, though - what were those like? which part was banana flavored? - the filling? the cookie? hmmmmm (pastry wheels turning in brain, smoke coming out of ears...)

Link to post
Share on other sites

My memories growing up always include pineapple upside-down cake, the yellow cake mix that you poked holes in with a toothpick and then poured jello over the top, and angel food cake filled with english toffee mixed with whipped cream or, if summer, filled with whipped cream and strawberries. One more memory -- the remnants of pie dough that she would sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and bake.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting replies . . . the infusion of grocery-store items into the consciousness of American Regional Classic Desserts.

You might look to Marion Cunningham's Lost Recipes.

If we are talking about commercially-made products, I would appreciate if someone could replicate the Mickey's Flip. Basically, a whoopie pie. But made from about a six inch in diameter circle of spongey cake, covered with about a half inch of that incredible creamy filling snack cakes sport, and then folded in half. The result is a half circle with a giant gob of white deliciousness hanging out. I was extremely fond of the banana version, which was probably a yellow cake with a banana-flavored cream.

Also, Lawson's featured half gallons of ice cream with their own brand. They had a unique flavor called banana split that had streaks of fudge through it, bananas, and chunks of maraschino cherries. It was delicious.

However, when I think of regional classics (I grew up in Ohio), I think:

cherry pie with a lattice crust -- made from the sour cherry tree in the back yard

strawberry shortcake -- made from the pick-your-own strawberry farm

blueberry pie -- ditto

As a current New Yorker, rice pudding or black and white cookies are the two classics. The best rice pudding comes from a Polish coffee shop. The only good black and white cookie I ever ate came from the student cafeteria at the Rochester Institute of Technology.

I like to bake nice things. And then I eat them. Then I can bake some more.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Good homemade butterscotch pudding with whipped cream on top.

Some great regional desserts from New Mexico are sopapillas, natillas, and capirotada.

The first are airy fried dough fritters served with honey. The second is an oeufs a la neige concoction with Spanish roots and New Mexican flavors. The third is a bread pudding with brown sugar, cinnamon, raisins, almonds and cheddar cheese. (yes, cheddar cheese.)

(I didn't grow up with any of these, but I think they are great American desserts.)

Jean Anderson's, "The American Century Cookbook" has a great overview of favorite American desserts of the 20th century.

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

Link to post
Share on other sites
ooooo, moon pies :wub: i'm loving the idea of making those from scratch! never had a banana one, though - what were those like? which part was banana flavored? - the filling? the cookie? hmmmmm (pastry wheels turning in brain, smoke coming out of ears...)

The icing has a banana flavor, but I think you could revamp it and make a cookie with a layer of marshmallow and a layer of banana cream.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I grew up in the central valley of California. I remember bread pudding made with brown sugar, cinnamon sticks and cheddar cheese, rice pudding heavily dusted with cinnamon, churros, fried homemade flour torillas with cinnamon sugar, and little fried pies(also made of flour torilla dough) filled with pureed pumpkin, cinnamon, brown sugar and butter).

My grandmother would have a treat waiting when I returned home from school. She didn't even have an electric mixer, she used hand rotary beaters.

My mouth is watering and my eyes are full of tears!

"A few days ago, I heard a doctor talking on television about the dangers of stress. It can kill you. It can cause a heart attack or stroke. The doctor listed many ways of coping with stress. Exercise. Diet Yoga. Talk a walk. I yelled, "Bake cookies." I often talk to the television. I yelled it again and again. The doctor went on with his list of 12 ways to reduce stress and he never once mentioned my sure-fire treatment......"

Maida Heatter

Link to post
Share on other sites

I remember; warm apple crisp with vanilla ice cream, jello and whipped cream (or Dream Whip) layered in parfait glasses, prune whip with the egg whites whipped by hand by my grandfather, strawberry shortcake, and frozen layer cakes by Pepperidge Farm.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I grew up in Chicago..right smack in the city. I remember sno-cones, Italian ice, soft serve ice cream from the ice cream truck, Dolly Madison cupcakes,snowballs,ho-ho's..etc..

My granny was a terrific baker(which is why I'm now in the pastry biz). I'd come home from school to find her making donuts & funnelcakes,churros,fritters.

My mom was a box cake maker..anything from a box was her preference. Remember pudding in a cloud? All those jello & pudding based desserts.

I just remembered this old candy/ice cream shop around the corner from where I grew up..He'd serve sherbert..homemade and all kinds of flavors. But I would get the rainbow one all the time. Served in those little flimsy paper cups where you could push it through to the top to get every last lick.

Edited by sugarbuzz (log)
Link to post
Share on other sites

My family is from Texas. For me, childhood dessert memories revolve around:

Pecan Pie (at the VERY top of the list)

Pound Cake (very close second)

Fried Pies

Fresh Apple Cake

Pineapple Pie

Chess Pie

Most all of them are simple, yet delicious.

ETA: We were never very into the store-bought convience desserts. Both my mother and grandmother were masters in the kitchen, and that sort of stuff really wasn't allowed in the house. However, I do remember with much fondness those orange-flavored push pops I was allowed on rare occasions to buy from the ice cream truck.

Edited by MissAmy (log)

-Sounds awfully rich!

-It is! That's why I serve it with ice cream to cut the sweetness!

Link to post
Share on other sites

grew up in So.Cal.

pineapple upside down cake, banana cream pie, coconut cream pie, fresh baked choc chip cookies (tollhouse), chocolate or hot fudge sundaes or banana splits, malts. strawberry shortcake (with angelfood cake). jello. jello pudding.

"You dont know everything in the world! You just know how to read!" -an ah-hah! moment for 6-yr old Miss O.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Chocolate Cream Pie with graham cracker crust. (I'm originally from Brooklyn, NY)

(Not desserts, but for drinks: Brooklyn Egg Cream and Chocolate Malted).

There's nothing better than a good friend, except a good friend with CHOCOLATE.
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Similar Content

    • By MightyD
      cakes, cookies, pies, that makes you smile!!!!
    • By meryll_thirteen
      Hi guys! I got excited to post something as this is my first one.
      So, the top 3 desserts I like to eat when I was still in Philippines were Halu-halo (literally means mix-mix in english), brazo de mercedes and chocolate crinkles.

      1. HALU-HALO is one of the popular food during summer. This is basically:
      shaved ice with evaporated milk,
      sugar,
      and the following:
      - nata de coco (coconut cream based on a google search, these are cube-like jellies),
      - sweetened red beans,
      - sweetened bananas,
      - cooked sago or tapioca,
      - ube or purple yam,
      - leche flan (this is also one of the best desserts to eat),
      - macapuno (made of coconut),
      - sweetend jackfruit,
      - sweetened kamote (this is similar to sweet potato but caramelized),
      - sweetened kaong (sugar palm fruit)
      - and topped with a scoop of ice cream.
      These fruits are usually bought in jars (found mostly in Asian grocery stores). You basically put the fruits at the bottom, add sugar (if you want because almost all the fruits are sweetened so it's already sweet), then you fill the cup/bowl with shaved ice and add milk. And most importantly, mix it well before you eat because you don't want to eat shaved ice with milk only and then eat the really sweet fruits last.

      2. BRAZO DE MERCEDES
      Yah, I think the name is Spanish? I tried making this but I just failed. It's kinda hard to do and takes a lot of patience but it's really worth it. This is my favourite cake! In Philippines, most bakeries sell this but my favourite is from Goldiluck's which is located in shopping malls.
      Brazo de Mercedes recipe

      3. CHOCOLATE CRINKLES
      These are my favourite chocolate cookies! I think this one isn't really from Philippines but they are really popular. I was kinda shocked when I came here in Canada, because they don't sell these cookies in the bakeries I've been to so I tried baking these on my own. Since my post is getting long, I'll put the recipe as a link at the bottom.
      http://sweb2.dmit.na...rinkles-recipe/
      I hope you enjoyed my post! Happy eating and baking everyone!
    • By ChrisZ
      Hoping for some help.  I accidentally melted an old mould that is very important to us and I've had no luck searching around for a replacement.  
      If anyone knows where I could buy one - or even has one to spare they would be willing to sell - please send me a message.
      The mould (label attached below) was originally labelled as "Easy as ABC gelatin mould", although we just call it the alphabet mould.  Yes there are lots of alphabet moulds around, including new silicone ones, but we need the specific designs on this one to replace the one I damaged.  Depending on the cost, I would consider paying for postage internationally (to Australia).
      Thanks in advance!

    • By Kasia
      BICOLOUR DESERT WITH SEMOLINA
       
      Today when we think about breakfast with milk we can choose different kinds of flakes, granolas, muesli and milk which has sometimes never been anywhere near a cow. When I was a child, only semolina rolled oats and rice were on the menu. Semolina with milk – our hated everyday breakfast – means that I don't fancy using it in my kitchen. But, as they say, time is a great healer and semolina was on our table last weekend for dessert. The dessert had two colours: the first layer was vanilla, and the second was with cocoa. On the top I put some mousse with blueberries. The dessert was very grand and really very tasty.

      Ingredients (for 4 people)
      vanilla layer
      50g of semolina
      400ml of milk
      3 tablespoons of brown sugar
      1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
      cocoa layer
      50g of semolina
      400ml of milk
      3 tablespoons of brown sugar
      2 tablespoons of cocoa
      fruit mousse
      200g of blueberries
      1 tablespoon of brown sugar
      pinch of cinnamon
      1 tablespoon of lemon juice

      First prepare the vanilla layer of the dessert. Boil the milk with sugar and vanilla essence. When the milk has boiled, slowly add the semolina, stirring constantly so as not to make lumps. Keep boiling and stirring until the mixture is stiff. Put some small glasses into some small bowls and arrange them in such a way that they are resting at an angle. Put the mixture into the glasses and leave to congeal. Now make the cocoa layer. Boil the milk with sugar. Mix the semolina with the cocoa. When the milk has boiled, slowly add the semolina with cocoa, stirring constantly so as not to make lumps. Keep boiling and stirring until the mixture is stiff. Place the glasses upright and put the cocoa mixture into them. Leave to congeal. Wash the blueberries and blend them with the sugar, cinnamon and lemon juice. Put the fruit mousse on top of the dessert.

      Enjoy your meal!

    • By Kasia
      BANOFFE - MY DAUGHTER'S BIRTHDAY CAKE
       
      This year, mischievous nature tried to upset my daughter's birthday plans. Spending your birthday in bed with a thermometer isn't an excellent idea ¬– even for an adult. For a teenager it is a drama comparable to cancelled holidays. My daughter told me that you are thirteen only once. And she was right. Literally and figuratively.

      I wanted to sugar the pill for her on this day and cheer her up for a bit, so I prepared a caramel cake with bananas – banoffee in the form of a small birthday cake. My sweet magic and the dinner from her favourite restaurant worked, and in the end her birthday was quite nice.

      Ingredients (17cm cake tin):
      150g of biscuits
      75g of butter
      200ml of 30% sweet cream
      250g of mascarpone cheese
      2 tablespoons of caster sugar
      2 bananas
      300g of fudge
      1 teaspoon of dark cocoa

      Break the biscuits into very small pieces or blend them. Melt the butter and mix it up with the biscuits until you have dough like wet sand. Put it into a cake tin and form the base. It is worth rolling it flat with a glass. Leave it in the fridge for one hour. Spread the biscuit layer with fudge and arrange the sliced bananas on top. Whisk the chilled sweet cream with the caster sugar. Add the mascarpone cheese and mix it in. Put the mixture onto the bananas and make it even. Sprinkle with the dark cocoa and decorate as you like. Leave it in the fridge for a few hours (best for the whole night).

      Enjoy your meal!

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...