Carolyn W. asked for help replacing a lost recipe for scalloped potatoes that was “the best I have ever had!” The recipe was from a co-worker who came from Pittsburgh, dated to the 1980s and was made with “thin sliced potatoes and onions and a cheese sauce.”
Readers treated us to an amazing range of potatoes that all had a connection to Pittsburgh. All had potatoes and cheese in common, but also called for ingredients as varied as cottage cheese, shredded cabbage and crushed potato chips.
Most called for shredded potatoes (primarily in the convenient form of frozen hash browns). Only one, from Linda Beebe Frank, used sliced potatoes as in the request. Frank credits Katie Johnson, whose recipe appears in Sacred Heart Elementary School’s 1998 Parent Teacher Guild cookbook, The Heart of Pittsburgh.
I’m also passing along the most popular recipe, since it is perfect for holiday buffets and potlucks. Thanks to B. T. of Morristown, N.Y., Rose of Wilmington, N.C., Laurie Cooper of Miami, P. C. of Kendall, Grace of Eau Claire, Wis., and for email from Chris LeMasters, R. S., Stuart and D.B.
It’s hard to imagine fudgy cupcakes with fewer than 200 calories each, ready to eat in less than half an hour, but I tried this trick from Harriet Ribotsky of Miami Beach and it couldn’t be easier. The taste of pumpkin is barely discernible.
“I’m sure your readers will enjoy the recipe,” she says. “It is inexpensive and amazingly fast and easy but the cupcakes are delicious.”
Don’t be tempted to add anything else when you see the batter, which will be very dense. You need no oil, butter or eggs with this recipe.