February 8 – Molasses Bar Day
Transplants, rejoice! February 8 is another national food day for a typically Southern dish, the molasses bar. Molasses is the syrupy sweet byproduct of sugar refinement, and over the years it’s been used itself as a food product in stuff ranging from gingerbread to spiced rum. It’s even used in Australia as a source of ethanol for alternative energy. But in the South, they’ve made this delicious sounding bar worthy of their rich culinary profile. The molasses bar is typically made of molasses, sugar, butter, raisins, and spices, and its texture is like a soft, chewy cookie. It sounds like the perfect thing to make with leftover ingredients from a long day of baking: sweet, simple, and takes very little effort to please.
I haven’t been able to find a similar product as the molasses bar sold up here in New York City–though I’m sure any bakery worth its salt will hand you thick, molasses-rich cookies or gingerbread bars full of the stuff. But for something that highlights the molasses ingredient as much as the molasses bar does, head to Williamsburg to The Blue Stove bakery. They make another Southern specialty–Pecan Pie–rich in molasses and heavy on the flavor. It was even remarked as the “Best Pecan Pie” in Brooklyn by BrooklynBased. Unlike many corn syrup based pecan pies, the molasses used in Blue Stove’s is a tried and true traditional recipe, and it can definitely be tasted in the rich, super-sweet filling. You won’t even miss the molasses bar once you’ve had a slice. 😉
The Blue Stove
415 Graham Ave (between Withers St & Jackson St), Brooklyn
“There are few pies more decedent than a well made pecan pie. At Blue Stove, the pecan pie is done just the way it should be, with a caramelized, fresh pecan-topped upper layer and an almost translucent, gel-like sugary center. Blue Stove’s pecan pie is a sugar injection that’s probably best shared with a friend, but if you have a pecan pie craving, this is the best way to satisfy it.”–BrooklynBased
Some reviews from Yelp.com:
“Nice inside–like someone took their great grandma’s kitchen and turned it over to the staff of DWELL. (In this case that’s a compliment). Nice gals behind the counter, and a sweet, doe-eyed, perpetual hazy-headed-seeming hipster dude too (tho I hope he wears a beard-net if he’s baking). The Molasses pecan pie is the very best thing at this place.”–Corey A.
“…the bitter sweet Chocolate Mousse pie (with whipped cream) and the Molasses Pecan Pie (with brown sugar) are delightful versions.”–Atif I.
Have you been able to find a real molasses bar being sold in the city? Any Southern transplants care to tell us about all their favorite haunts? Let us know about it in the comments!