Ables’ fried pies and caramel cakes still popular

SMITHVILLE – A food column featuring the recipes of Pinkie Ables first ran March 22, 2000, in The Amory Advertiser. After the column ran, numerous calls were received about how good her recipes were. The recipes that garnered the most interest were her caramel cake and fried pies. People called saying they had great success with her caramel cake and frosting, and her fried pies turned out perfect.

ALICE ORTIZ/MONROE JOURNALABLES STILL COOKING – Pinkie Ables of Smithville doesn't do a lot of cooking any more, but she hasn't lost her touch with fried apple pies.

ALICE ORTIZ/MONROE JOURNAL
ABLES STILL COOKING – Pinkie Ables of Smithville doesn’t do a lot of cooking any more, but she hasn’t lost her touch with fried apple pies.

Ables has had a reputation as an outstanding cook for years. Wherever she has taken food, it has quickly disappeared. She also enjoys making up recipes.
She turned 95 in November 2012, and is still able to live alone and cook. She has a pacemaker, but otherwise is doing well.
“At my age, I am blessed to be able to take care of myself. My kids live close by and check on me often,” Ables said.
Cornbread Squash Casserole
2 cups cooked yellow squash
1 – 1/2 cups cornbread, crumbled
1 med. onion, finely chopped
1 egg
1 1/2 cups shredded cheese, save some
for topping
2 Tbsp. margarine
1/3 to 1/2 cup milk
Saute onions in margarine. Mix squash, cornbread, and onions. Add egg, 1 cup cheese and milk. Pour into greased 1-quart casserole dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove from oven, sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup cheese and return to oven just long enough to melt.
Chicken Casserole
6 or 8 chicken breasts
Boil and pick off bone and cut into bite-size pieces. Put chicken in casserole dish.
Combine 2 cans of cream of chicken and 1 carton of sour cream. Mix this with chicken.
Crush 1 roll of Ritz® crackers or Town House®. Put on top of chicken mixture.  Melt 1 1/2 sticks margarine. Pour over top. Bake at 350 degrees oven for 30 minutes.
Vegetable Soup
(This is Ables’ original recipe)
1 bag frozen purple hull peas
1 bag frozen butterbeans
1 can whole kernel corn, drained
1 cup chopped cabbage
3 large potatoes, diced
1 large hot pepper
1 large onion, chopped
salt to taste
2 carrots, diced
Cook until tender in 3 cups of water. Brown 1 1/2 lbs. ground beef, drain. Add 1 can cream of chicken soup, 1 quart of tomatoes, and 1/4 cups sugar. Simmer 20 minutes.
NOTE: You can use pork, beef, or chicken.
Chicken and Dumplings
3 large chicken breasts, pressure cook,
and debone. Take broth, add 1 can cream of chicken soup, 1/4 stick margarine, salt and pepper to taste. Heat until boiling.
Make regular biscuit dough: roll out thin and cut into strips. Drop in hot boiling liquid. Take chicken and sprinkle over top, let simmer 15 minutes.
NOTE: Ables using buttermilk, Crisco® and self-rising flour for her biscuits.
Fried Pies
Crust:
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup creamed Crisco®
Self-rising flour, use enough to make like biscuit dough.
Mix gently and knead. Pinch off enough to make one crust at a time. Roll out, put fruit in it, and fry in creamed Crisco® shortening. Drain on paper towels. Lightly cover fried pies. Stacking and tightly covering will make them soft.
Peach Filling:
Mix 1 – 7 oz. bag dried peaches with some water. Cook in pressure cooker for 15 minutes. Take out, drain, and mash with 2 cups sugar, 1/2 stick oleo. Put in pan and cook on top of stove until thick. Fill crust with fruit.
Apple Filling:
1 lag of any kind of apples, cut up and cook until tender. Drain off water, add ground allspice, enough sugar to sweeten the amount of apples cooked, and 1/2 stick oleo. Cook until thick.
Pecan Pie
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
5 Tbsp. white Karo®
3 Tbsp. butter
1 1/2 cups ground or finely chopped
pecans
1 tsp. vanilla
Mix and pour into pie crust. Bake in 300 degree oven for 50-55 minutes.
NOTE: Best ever pecan pie. Doesn’t run.
Caramel Cake
Duncan Hines® cake mix
Instead of water, use sweet milk and add 1 teaspoon vanilla. Bake according to directions in cake pans for layers.
Caramel Frosting:
2 – 1/2 cups sugar
10 Tbsp. (5 oz.) milk
2 sticks real butter
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. vanilla
Put butter and 2 cups milk in pan with milk. Bring to a boil while melting 1/2 cup  sugar. When it is near same temperature, pour browned sugar in with other mixture. Cook until soft ball drops from spoon. Take off heat, add baking powder and vanilla. Beat until cool. Frost cake. Doesn’t get hard, stays nice and soft.
Buttermilk Pound Cake
3 cups plain flour
2 2/3 cups sugar
1 cup shortening
1 cup buttermilk
4 eggs
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. favorite flavoring
Mix all ingredients and pour into greased tube pan. Bake at 300 degrees for 1 hour and 15 minutes.
Frosting:
1/2 stick butter
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup milk
1 – 6 oz bag fresh frozen coconut
Cook butter, sugar, and milk until thick. Beat until almost cool. Add some of the coconut. Spread on cake. Then sprinkle the rest of coconut on top.
NOTE: This frosting is Ables’ original recipe.
German Chocolate Cake
1 cup Crisco®
1 – 3/4 cups sugar
2 -1/2 cups cake flour
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. soda
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. salt
4 egg yolks
4 egg whites
1 bar German Chocolate
Melt one bar of German chocolate in 1/2 cup boiling water, cool. Cream Crisco® and sugar in mixing bowl. Add egg yolks, then melted chocolate, Stir soda in buttermilk; add alternately with flour. Add vanilla and salt. Beat egg whites until stiff and fold in last.Pour into three prepared cake pans. Cook at 350 degrees until cake pulls from pan. Cool.
Frosting:
3 egg yolks
1 cup sugar
1 cup flake coconut
1 cup Carnation® milk
1 stick oleo
1 cup pecan pieces
1 tsp. vanilla
Mix all above in boiler except pecans and coconut. Stir constantly. Cook until thick like custard. Cool, then add pecans and coconut.  Frost cake.
7-Up Pineapple Cake
1 Duncan Hines® pineapple cake mix
1 pkg. instant pineapple pudding mix
4 eggs
3/4 cup oil
1 – 10 oz. bottle 7-Up
Mix together and pour into two prepared cake pans. Bake until done, punch holes in cake layers and frost while hot.
Icing:
3 eggs
2 1/2 cups sugar
2 Tbsp. cornstarch or flour
1/2 stick oleo
1 large can crushed pineapple with
heavy syrup
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup shredded coconut
Mix together and cook until thick. Spread on cake while hot.
NOTE: This was a favorite at the pants factory when Ables worked there.
Heath Cake
1 white Duncan Hines® cake mix
Mix according to directions, then add 1 cup Heath chips.
Bake in Bundt pan as directed on box.
NOTE: This is another cake that Ables made up. She thought Heath chips would make a nice addition to a plain white cake.