Photo: joyosity, Flickr
Maine's official state dessert is up for debate -- and it's turning into a war of health vs. nostalgia. The legislature is close to passing a bill, L.D. 71, that would give the crown to the whoopie pie, a dessert that has a storied history in the state, reports the Kennebec Journal. But local nutritionists say the crown should go to wild blueberry pie, since the flavorful berries are abundant in the state -- and far healthier.
The Journal article reports that lawmakers don't want to be seen endorsing a high-fat treat. "At a time when 31.3 percent of Maine's children are considered overweight or obese, do we want to glorify a dessert that lists lard as its primary ingredient?" asked Rep. Donald Pilon.
Proponents of the whoopie say that the "frosting delivery vehicles," as they've been called, can be healthy too, if baked with real chocolate (don't laugh -- it contains antioxidants!) or with variations like pumpkin or peanut butter.
And though blueberry pie is delicious, the whoopie pie's appeal is massive. People come from all over the country to eat Maine's whoopie pies, and according to historian Nancy Griffin, author of Making Whoopies: The Official Whoopie Pie Book, "Labadie's Bakery in Lewiston has been baking them since 1925 -- far longer than any other bakery in the country," reports the Journal. But retired lyricist John Linscott perhaps sums up the love best in these lines:
"We need comfort.
The whoopie pie is the answer.
It's a panacea for all our ills."
The committee is still undecided but will resume on February 9. What do you think? Should the whoopie be overthrown in favor of wild blueberry pie?
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