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Graphics by Rhio

 Remember Pennington's Drive-In?

How About Black-Bottom Pie or Onion Rings?

Dividing Line

 Tulsa World newspaper, Scene (May 5, 2004)

"The Missing Link. A reader finds a Pennington's Drive-In cookbook and solves the mystery of the Black Bottom Pie." [article by: Ashley Parrish, World Scene Writer]

Ashley writes ... "If you want to find somebody who remembers Pennington's Drive-In, throw a rock in the air and if it lands on someone who grew up in Tulsa during the '50s or '60s, you've found yourself a memory of Pennington's." [Pennington's closed in the 1980s]

Although Ashley included some neat stories from people about Pennington's the point of Ashley's article was the discovery of a spiral-bound book titled "The Original Pennington's Cookbook," with a forward by Judy Pennington, who writes: "To the many faithful Pennington's customers. I wrote this book for you. You have asked over the past years for our most popular recipes. Some have been printed incorrectly. I wanted to set the record straight. These recipes have been used and kept secret for the past 60 years. I think that is long enough. ... Everyone should know how to make a good cherry limeade or enjoy a piece of Black Bottom Pie at home."

So for those of us who remember the good times at Pennington's ....

Pennington's Black Bottom Pie

1 9-inch pie shell, baked, recipe follows
6 tablespoons cocoa
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon butter extract or flavoring
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 1/4 cups milk
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/3 cup cornstarch
Pinch of salt
4 eggs
1 capful red food coloring
Whipped Topping:
1 cup whipping cream
1/4 to 1/3 cup confectioners' sugar, or to taste.

1. Make a high-fluted edge on pie shell when preparing shell to hold the filling.

2. Melt butter in a large double boiler over high heat. Add red food color, vanilla and butter extract. Add 3/4 of the milk and heat through. Reserve 1/4 of the milk.

3. Mix all dry ingredients in a large bowl; add in remaining milk, blending until smooth. Separate eggs, storing whites in metal bowl in refrigerator; add yolks to mixture, whisking until smooth and well blended.

4. When mixture in the double boiler reaches 180 degrees, add cornstarch to the mixture, stirring constantly until the mixture thickens. Turn heat to low and cook for 1 hour.

5. Whip the eggs whites until stiff peaks form. Fold the chocolate mixture into the egg whites very gently, just until no white streaks appear. Refrigerate until pie is completely cooled. Top with whipped topping just before serving.

6. To make whipped topping, pour whipping cream into chilled mixing bowl. Add sugar and mix with chilled beaters. Mix on medium speed until peaks begin to form. Spread on pie with spatula. It should have peaks and waves on surface.

Pennington's Pie Crust:

1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup shortening
3 tablespoons water

1. Mix flour and salt in bowl. Lightly cut in shortening with pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse meal. Sprinkle in water, a small amount at a time, until all particles are moistened and cling together when pressed into a ball. Cover with a damp cloth and let rest a few minutes. Roll out thin (less than an 1/8 inch) on lightly floured board.

2. Fold and place in pie pan. Prick bottom and sides of baking shell first. Back at 425 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes or until lightly brown.

Pennington's Onion Rings:

Onion rings, sliced thin
2 cups of milk, plus more for soaking
1 egg
flour, enough to make a thin batter

1. Slice onions in thin rings. Place in bowl of milk and soak for at least an hour.

2. Make batter of 2 cups of milk, 1 egg and enough flour to make batter the consistency of pancake batter. Put a handful of rings in batter. Remove from batter and hold over bowl until excess batter drains off.

3. Dust the battered rings in flour until they are fully covered. Shake off excess flour. Cook in deep fryer at 360 degrees until golden.

Pennington's Cherry Limeade

2 ounces simple syrup
Juice from 1/2 fresh lime
2 squirts cherry flavoring or syrup.

Mix all ingredients in a tall glass. Fill with Teem; add ice, top with a cherry.

[do they even make Teem anymore, I wonder?- Linda] 

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Contact: Linda Haas Davenport