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Apple Pan Dowdy

Updated on August 25, 2012

Apple Pan Dowdy New Mexico Style

I have no idea why this was called Apple Pan Dowdy in my family. (We also called bell peppers mangoes and ate oysters like we lived on the Coast.) If you do a recipe search you will find Apple Pan Dowdy is an apple cake like mixture with a biscuit topping. Well, not in my family. It is more of a pudding and apple cake affair with a heavenly syrup topping poured on it the minute it leaves the oven.

Still, Apple Pan Dowdy does trace its roots back to the English desserts of steamed puddings. Often it was made in a cast iron pan. My family does include some English. Well, I can say that about English, Irish, German, Swiss, and Italian. Some of us got here by way of the East Coast, and Canada. We are a typical USA mixed background. I even have one great grandfather who was rescued as a baby from a cholera epidemic and no one knows who his ‘people’ were. We brought Apple Pan Dowdy with us from somewhere!

Then there is the 1945 popular song about Pennsylvania Dutch cooking with music by Guy Woodand and words by Sammy Gallop.

If you wanna do right by your appetite

If you’re fussy about your food

Take a choo choo today, head New England way

And we’ll put you in the happiest mood with

Shoo Fly Pie and Apple Pan Dowdy

Makes your eyes light up

Your tummy say “Howdy”

Shoo Fly Pie and Apple Pan Dowdy

I never get enough of that wonderful stuff.

Shoo Fly Pie and Apple Pan Dowdy

Makes the sun come out

When Heavens are cloudy

Shoo Fly Pie and Apple Pan Dowdy

Below the recipe you will find a You Tube of Miss Dinah Shore singing the Shoo Fly Pie and Apple Pan Dowdy song! Do listen as it is very good!

Apple Pan Dowdy from Midwest USA to New Mexico

Pre-heat oven to 375°


4 C. diced apples

2 C. sugar

2 eggs (unless small then use 3 eggs)

2 C. flour (use the pre-sifted flour)

3 T. cinnamon (use real cinnamon for best taste see below)

2 t. baking soda


Mix sugar with apples and let sit until the sugar dissolves

Add eggs and beat well

Stir dry ingredients into the apples and eggs until fully mixed

Spray an 11 X 8 inch glass baking pan with non-stick oil

Pour mixture into pan

Bake for 40 minutes or until toothpick comes out of center clean

Have the topping ready. Make this topping while the Apple Pan Dowdy bakes.

Apple Pan Dowdy Topping

1 C. brown sugar

1 C. white sugar

4 T. flour

2 C. cool water

Whisk all of these together in a pan

Cook on stove until the mixture becomes opaque as the sugar melts

Stir in the following:

½ cup of margarine (butter doesn’t work as well here)

1 T. vanilla

Pour this slowly over the hot cake after it comes out of the oven.

This will wow any group of people. Guaranteed!

One last thing, do add a ¼ cup of finely chopped mild green chilés to the basic batter as it tastes very good. You don’t know what is adding that special piquant flavor but it is mighty good. Think how we add a slab of cheddar cheese to apple pie. Both seem unlikely but both work to create a delicious dessert. It is good but I chose to not add the green chilé this time.

Dinah Shore Singing Shoo Fly Pie and Apple Pan Dowdy


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    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 2 years ago from Brazil

      I know my husband would love this. Apples and cinnamon work so well together. I had to double check but sure enough it has 4 cups of sugar. Wow, I can almost feel my hips expanding. lol

      I used to love Dinah Shore, I haven't thought about her in ages, thanks for that trip down memory lane.

    • profile image

      Jackie 6 years ago

      Love the info and the song.

    • profile image

      NMLady 6 years ago

      Thanks Dirt Farmer. I feel like I am 'getting my sea legs' on this blogging thing. Sure it is work but it is more fun than work!

    • The Dirt Farmer profile image

      Jill Spencer 6 years ago from United States

      What a neat hub! A great blend of narrative, nostalgia and great eating. Vote up!