There are some foods that are simply more at home in the Northwoods than others. Pudgy pies are among them. In fact, making pudgy pies is arguably one of the best ways to make memories, surrounded by friends, family and satisfied tummies.
These sweet or savory, handheld delights can be served as an appetizer or a main dish, with as many variations of filling as your mind can conjure up! Some varieties make use of what’s available in this part of the world (think fresh berries from the farmer's market or local aged cheddar). And, other than a simple pie iron, they don’t require much equipment or skill to make.
Interested in trying your hand at making pudgy pies? Great! Make plans to visit Birch Trail Resort Bed & Breakfast offering plenty of campfire pits and grills to host your next pudgy pie feast!
What is a Pudgy Pie?
A pudgy pie is essentially a toasted sandwich (think not-fancy panini). It's a simple dish that's easy to make and even easier to clean up after! A pudgy pie is constructed from two pieces of soft bread, placed on either side of a pie iron, and filled with a variety of different food items.
Fillings can range from sweet - like a PB&J or a smore - to savory - like a pizza or ham & cheese sandwich. After spraying both sides of the pie iron with non-stick spray, and assembling the sandwich inside, the pie iron is closed (similar to a waffle iron) and placed inside the campfire for roughly 2-4 minutes per side. Once the bread is golden brown, the pudgy pie is ready for eating...although we do caution to let it rest for a minute or two as the filling will be piping hot!
Where Does the Word Pudgy Come From?
Although the word pudgy has negative connotations, it was actually meant as a term of endearment. Pudgy pies are small pies with a rather "pudgy" midsection that can be picked up easily with two hands. The first record of these pudgy pies dates back to the 1920's, although no one really knows who the first person was to make or name them! But thank goodness they did!
The best feature of pudgy pies is that no matter the group of people you are "cooking for", there is a filling for everyone. You could prepare a handful of different options to choose from and make a custom pudgy pie for everyone in your group. Fillings can range from classic to fancy or totally absurd, making your pudgy the talk of the trip.
Classic Pudgy Pie Fillings
The Peanut Butter & Jelly - This ooey gooey rendition of the classic PB&J is perfect for the kiddos who aren't interested in the fancy fixings.
Ham & Cheese - A few slices of deli ham, a slice of local, aged, cheddar (we are in Wisconsin after all) and the optional mayo/miracle whip. Delicious!
The Smore - What's better than smores around a campfire....a smore pudgy pie! Toast a couple marshmallows first, then layer with a chocolate bar inside the two pieces of bread, toast for 2 minutes per side and you now have sweet bliss in a golden pocket.
Fancy Pudgy Pie Filling
Pizza - Ok, not that fancy, but still more "sophisticated" than some others. Layer your bread with marinera sauce, mozzarella cheese, and your favorite pizza toppings (precooked sausage or pepperoni, veggies or pineapple if you dare).
Egg Sandwich - Best after frying your egg on another pan - Assemble precooked bacon, slice of cheddar and fried egg on top of your bread. Heat and be amazed.
Tuna Melt - Layer premade tuna salad and a slice of your favorite cheese. Melty goodness awaits.
Berry Bliss - Prepare fresh berries (from the Minocqua farmer's market) with a sprinkle of sugar in a bowl and mix. Let set to soften. Spread cream cheese over insides of bread, then add berries and cook. Yum!
Absurd Pudgy Pie Fillings
Here, you're on your own. Assemble any combination of food items you have on hand while vacationing in the Northwoods that sounds even remotely good to you. If it tastes horrible, hold back your "yuk" face, hand it to the person to your right and tell them it's delicious for a rich round of laughter.
Visit Birch Trail Resort and start making memories in Minocqua that you'll remember for a lifetime. Call 715-588-1962 today for pricing and availability.