Whoopie Pies: the latest culinary craze
A new cake craze is taking on the culinary world: the Whoopie Pie. Straight from the US, this scrumptious little sandwich cake seems well on its way to pushing the cupcake off of its sugarcoated throne.
Let it be known, Whoopie Pies are going to be everywhere; and everywhere means not only at your favourite teashop, but also all over the IN-fashion food universe. So, if you don't want to be OUT the next time you meet with your Sex & The City gal pals, read up on the basic must-know about the Whoopie Pie.
What is a Whoopie Pie?
The Whoopie story began in the 1920s in Pennsylvania, United States. Amish women used to prepare humble lunch boxes for their farmer husbands and children. The legend says that when their menfolk discovered a generous chocolate and vanilla cream sandwich cake nestled inside their lunchboxes, they would let out a victorious “whoopee!” that gave its name to the Whoopie Pie.
Something like a macaroon (and not at all like a pie), the original Whoopie Pie is made from leftover batter, into two round chocolate cookies stuck together with a creamy buttercream or marshmallow filling. Therefore, the Whoopie Pie wasn’t everyday fare, as there had to be left over cake batter to make one.
Considered tastier than a regular cake, Whoopie Pies gradually moved into the mainstream and have become appreciated over the years, culminating in a legal wrangle between Maine and Pennsylvania to get the Whoopie Pie as their official state dessert. It is generally believed that the Whoopie first appeared in Pennsylvania and was then brought to Maine by the Amish when they moved there.
Whoopies as a foodie fashion statement
The traditional Whoopie Pie is as big as a hamburger, made with vegetable shortening and is quite sweet. Two mound shaped chocolate cakes enclose a fluffy vanilla buttercream, and kids loved this type of Whoopie along with a glass of milk. Certainly too rustic (and too big) to be fashionable, over the last couple of years, trendy bakeries from New York and Brooklyn have adapted both the Whoopie recipe and design to turn the Whoopie into a cuter palm-sized treat, most of the time organic, and always very colourful.
All over the web, fashionistas display pictures of Whoopies from every angle. Used more as an art piece or as an accessory, the actual cooking of Whoopie Pies is left to hard-core foodies. And so a total transformation has been achieved: from a large chocolate-vanilla cake, we now have tiny fluffy macaroon-style cakes available in almost any colour or flavour you can think of! Even the cupcake’s characteristic icing tops have migrated on the tops of the Whoopies; just in time to receive multi-coloured sugar sprinkles.
When Harrod’s and Marks & Spencer in London introduced their Couture and Girly Whoopies in late 2009, there was no doubt that they’d be a huge success. Yet, while extremely well established in the US, the Whoopie Pie is still quite discrete in Europe. However, by the end of the year, they should have move up to a high-fashion status (especially over spring and summer).
So, if you want to be a bit ahead of the pack and impress your foodie fashionista friends, why not offer a box of Valentine’s Day red velvet, heart shaped Whoopie Pie, made with your own loving and fashionable fingers…
- Buy Whoopie Pies online in the UK from Outisider Tart or Sweet Things or The Hummingbird Bakery
- Make your own Red Velvet Whoopie Pies
- Buy a Whoopie Pies recipe book
Copyright © 2011 Doctissimo
- Is alcohol good for you?
- 'Once-in-a-while' foods
- Cracking open the myths about chocolate
- Cheers – a guide to responsible drinking
- Champagne: choosing a good bottle of bubbly
- Are crisps and chips dangerous for health?
- Chocolate: Guilty pleasure that’s actually good for you!
- Junk food is out to get you!
- Loving your tummy this Christmas
Get more on this subject…