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A yellow brick road of recipes

January 15, 2014
By ESTHER MCCOY - Food editor ( , Weirton Daily Times

Feb. 1 is the birthday of Clark Gable, who was born in Cadiz in a two-story apartment on Charleston Street.

At one of his birthday celebrations held by the Clark Gable Foundation the event included the appearance of three of the Munchkins from the movie "Wizard of Oz." They were Margaret Pellegrini, the "Flower Pot Kid;" Jerry Maren, the "Lollipop Kid;" and Karl Stover, who was sold to a circus in Romania by his dad and went on to appear in movies after being in a midget troupe.

JoAnne Faulkner of Weirton has always been a "Wizard of Oz" fan. She graciously let me go through "Cooking in Oz," her recipe book, to see what recipes I could use. There are many from stars, script people, the Munchkins, relatives of stars and non-actors.

Article Photos

The Warren Ridge Wranglers had a booth on the Wizard of Oz, with Dorothy telling Toto what a funny dream she had. This was at the Jefferson County Fair and was one of the booth winners. -- Esther McCoy

To start down the Yellow Brick Road to tasty Wizard of Oz goodies, we will print the mint square recipe from JoAnne Faulkner. It has a nice chocolate flavor, with the cool flavor of mint.

I thought it might be Margaret Hamilton's cookies, as they were called the Wicked Witch's Mint Squares, but it does not give a name for these.

Wicked Witch's Mint Squares

3 1-ounce squares unsweetened chocolate

3/4 cup margarine

1 1/2 cups sugar

3/4 cup flour, sifted

3 eggs

3/4 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup plus 2 1/2 tablespoons butter

16-ounce package confectioners' sugar

2 teaspoons peppermint extract

3 drops green food coloring

2 1-ounce squares semisweet chocolate

2 1/2 tablespoons shortening

Grease and flour a 16- by-11-inch jelly roll pan. In a small saucepan, melt the unsweetened chocolate and 3/4 cup margarine. Stir well, remove from heat and add sugar, flour, eggs and vanilla. Spread on the prepared pan. Bake at 375 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes. Let cool. In a small bowl cream together the butter, confectioners' sugar, peppermint extract and food coloring until light and fluffy. Spread on cooled chocolate layer. Place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the semisweet chocolate and shortening, stirring until smooth. Drizzle over the mint layer. Cool and cut into squares. Makes 60 bars.

This is different than the peanut butter pie that I make. It is from Murray Wood, one of the Munchkins in Oz.

Winkie Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie

22 Oreo cookies, finely crushed

1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted

1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

1 cup sliced bananas, 2 medium

Two 4-ounce packages instant chocolate pudding mix

3 cups milk

Whipped topping

Unsweetened chocolate curls for garnish

In a small bowl, combine cookie crumbs and butter. Press the mixture firmly into the bottom and sides of a 9-inch pie plate. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Spread peanut butter over the bottom of the prepared curst. Arrange bananas over the peanut butter and set aside. In a medium bowl beat the pudding mix and milk with a mixer at low speed for 1 minute. Pour pudding over the bananas. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving. Top with whipped topping and shaved unsweetened chocolate.

This is another cookie with wicked in the title. They are from Mary Ellen St. Aubin, wife of Parnell St. Aubin, a Munchkin in the MGM film.

Good and Wicked Bourbon Balls

2 1/2 cups finely crushed vanilla wafers

2 tablespoons cocoa

1 cup confectioners' sugar

1 cup finely chopped walnuts

3 tablespoon corn syrup

1/4 cup bourbon

Confectioners sugar

In a medium bowl, combine wafer crumbs, cocoa, sugar and nuts. Add the corn syrup and bourbon, Mix well. In a shallow dish, place a layer of confectioners' sugar. Form the crumb mixture into 1-inch balls and roll in sugar to coat. Store for a day or so in a covered container for the flavors to meld.

Robert Baum, great grandson of L. Frank Baum, the author of "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz," submitted this recipe, one of his grandmother's favorites.

And he notes that there is no scotch in the ingredients. It is an old-time delicacy from Scotland, crisp, thick and buttery.

Edna Baum's Scotch Shortbread

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup sugar

2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted

1/2 teaspoons cornstarch

1 egg yolk, if needed for moisture

In a medium bowl, cream the butter and sugar until very smooth. Stir in the flour and cornstarch. Mix thoroughly with hands, adding egg yolk if the mixture is too dry. Chill. Line cookie sheets with waxed paper. Roll the dough to 1/3 to 1/2-inch thickness. Cut into fancy shapes and pierce, if desired. Place on prepared pans and bake at 300 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes. Cool completely before putting in a tin container.

Note: The tops do not brown during baking, nor does the shape of the cookies

This Great and Powerful Rum Cake is rich with pecans and dark run and glazed with a rum sauce that makes it gooey and delicious. It is from Jean Sheets, but it does not explain who she is.

Great and Powerful Rum Cake

1 cup chopped pecans

18 1/2-ounce package yellow cake mix

3 3/4-ounce package instant vanilla pudding mix

4 eggs

1/2 cup cold water

1/2 cup oil

1 cup Barcardi dark rum, divided

1/2 cup butter

1/4 cup water

1/2 cup sugar

Grease and flour a 10-inch tube pan. Sprinkle pecans over the bottom of pan. In a large bowl, mix the cake and pudding mixes, eggs, 1/2 cup cold water, oil and 1/2 cup rum. Pour the batter gently over the pecans in the bottom of the pan. Bake at 325 degrees for 40 to 50 minutes. Set cake aside to cool. In a small saucepan, melt the butter. Stir in 1/4 cup water and the sugar. Boil for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Stir in the remaining rum. Invert the cake onto a serving plate. Prick the top of the cake with a toothpick. Dribble glaze on the top and sides. Allow the cake to absorb the glaze. Repeat until glaze is used up.

Note: A Bundt cake can be used instead of a tube pan.

(McCoy can be contacted at

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