Nowadays we are awash with adoration for Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama. And rightly so. These boss bitches took the title of FLOTUS and used it as a force for good. Who can forget then-First Lady Clinton’s flawless declaration in Beijing that “Women’s Rights are Human Rights,” even as she stood on Chinese soil at the height of its struggle with female infanticide under the one-child-per-family policy? And Michelle Obama, though her Let’s Move campaign might not approve of the amount of butter and sugar we use here at The Bakeriarchy, has been a vocal advocate of women’s rights, especially working to empower women of color.
We love these ladies and all they do to further the position of women in the world. But without the trail-blazing efforts of one amazing FLOTUS, Hillary and Michelle might have been stuck doing nothing but planning state dinners and smiling for the cameras.
That’s right. We’re talking about the OG FLOTUS: Eleanor Motherfucking Roosevelt.
Ok, so Eleanor came from a very wealthy family and went to a fancy boarding school and was generally pretty privileged. Sounds like typical first lady fodder, right? Well what made Eleanor Roosevelt’s outlook on life so special was that, other than the basic levels of privilege her family’s wealth afforded her, her childhood kind of sucked. She was orphaned at a young age. She was mocked by relatives for her plain looks. She didn’t have many friends. But all of this, coupled with the feminist education she received at Allenswood Academy in England, created a women who could look past the superficial comforts of her life and empathize with the plights of numerous marginalized communities.
But don’t think Eleanor was just some lovey-dovey softie. Girl knew her way around the political boy’s club. In fact, after polio paralyzed her husband’s legs, it was Eleanor who convinced him to stay in politics, frequently making public appearances on the campaign trail on Franklin’s behalf. And this was in the early 1920s. Like…women had only just gained the right to vote, and this badass bitch was running campaigns and giving policy speeches.
Once FDR was inaugurated, Eleanor refused to take a back seat. As America navigated crisis after crisis, from the Great Depression to World War II, Eleanor cemented herself as a staunch activist, even driving her own car to visit World War I veterans protesting for their bonuses. Eleanor fought for women’s rights, veterans’ rights, refugees’ rights, civil rights for Asian Americans struggling in internment camps, and civil rights for African Americans (including the boss move of inviting famed African American contralto Marian Anderson to sing at the Lincoln Memorial after the DAR blocked one of her performances).
And for that, this ultimate boss-bitch FLOTUS deserves some pie.
And, like, can we just talk about this pie for a second? Even if you’re one of those people who knocks oatmeal raisin cookies, you really have got to try this. Just like Eleanor, it takes a classic (oatmeal cookies, gender roles) and reinvents it (cookie pie, baller FLOTUS activism) for the betterment of society.
Just like Eleanor, this pie is sweet, rich, and packs one hell of a punch (hellooooo boozy raisins). And also like Eleanor, we can’t get enough of it.
Eleanor Oatmeal-Raisin-velt Pie
(adapted from pastry goddess Christina Tosi’s Crack Pie™)
- 9 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 5 ½ tablespoons packed light brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- ¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons old-fashioned oats
- ½ cup all purpose flour
- ¾ tsp cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¾ cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon nonfat milk powder
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
- 5 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
- 4 large egg yolks
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon allspice
- ¾ cup raisins
- 1/8 cup (generous) Scotch whisky*
- Powdered Sugar & Cinnamon for dusting
Pour whisky over the raisins in a small bowl. Let sit for at least 3 hours.
*We love the subtle smokiness that a (not-too-peaty) Scotch adds to the raisins, but if you’re not a Scotch drinker, feel free to use your favorite bourbon or Irish whiskey!
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and coat with nonstick cooking spray,
Combine 6 tablespoons of room temperature butter, 4 tablespoons brown sugar, and 2 tablespoons sugar in a medium bowl. Beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add egg, and beat until pale. Add oats, flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and allspice and beat until just blended. Turn the batter out onto the prepared baking sheet, spreading evenly to the edges of the pan. Bake until light golden brown, 17-18 minutes. Let cool completely.
Using hands, crumble the oat cookie into a large bowl. Add 3 tablespoons butter and 1 ½ tablespoons brown sugar. Combine by hand until mixture is moist enough to stick together. Transfer cookie mixture to a 9-inch glass pie dish. Using fingers, press mixture evenly into the dish.
Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350°F. Whisk both sugars, milk powder, salt, cinnamon, and allspice in a medium bowl to blend. Add melted butter and whisk until blended. Add cream, then egg yolks and vanilla and whisk until well blended. Add raisins and stir until any remaining whisky is combined.
Pour filling into crust. Bake pie 30 minutes. Reduce oven to 325°F and continue baking until filling is brown and set around the edges but the center still moves slightly when shaken, about 20 minutes.
Cool pie completely, and dust with powdered sugar and cinnamon. Serve chilled (for easiest slicing) or room temperature.