A Special Christmas Treat

Ok, so I’m not entirely sure what the real name for this should be but this is the name we came up with last night. Papa D has been talking about this dessert that his Granny would make and how much he enjoyed it and would love to have some. The only problem was no one had the recipe nor did anyone know the real name for it.

When he explained it to me I thought it sounded similar to the Blackberry Dumplings my mom-mom always made. Yummmmmmmy! So for the past few months, I have been researching and trying to find this mysterious recipe. I’ve gone through some of my old cookbooks and then looked online too. I’ve found many similar recipes but nothing that seemed to fit what he was describing so I figured I’d just kind of ‘wing it’ and make my own recipe.

This was a bit scary as I’ve never tasted nor seen what this was and I didn’t want to ask Papa D any more questions as he might figure out what kind of surprise I was planning. I did manage to talk to Mr. Awesome’s mom who had made this before and got a little bit more information but she wasn’t really certain about all of the ingredients or amounts either as it had been a long time since she had made this too.

Here is the recipe I came up with. I may still tweak it a little here and there but it was really good just like this. You may also want to add a little cinnamon or spices but Papa D isn’t too crazy about cinnamon. (I’ll try to remember to snap a picture of this treat the next time I make it add to this post.)

Blackberry Pig in a Poke

Blackberry Pig in a Poke with a Brown Sugar Glaze and a Traditional Glaze


For the Dumpling Dough:

  • 2 c. self rising flour
  • 2 T. Shortening
  • 1/2 c. – 1c. milk, (maybe a tad more) just enough to get the dough soft

For the filling:

  • 2-3 c. blackberries
  • 1 c. sugar

For the glaze:

  • 1 c. butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • nutmeg, optional


You will need a large pot with boiling water and a cheesecloth or flour sack. (I used a large flour sack towel.

Gently mix the blackberries and sugar together, let sit.

Mix the shortening into the flour until crumbly. Add the milk to form a soft dough. Roll the dough out, on a lightly floured surface, into a rectangle. Get it about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick.

Now take the blackberries and spread them onto the dough leaving about 1/2 inch from the edges.

Carefully roll the dough up, like a jelly roll, and form into a circle.

Be very careful and place this onto your cheesecloth or flour sack. Tie the ends up tightly.

Now drop this into your boiling water and let cook 20-25 minutes. Watch closely to prevent boil overs.

While the dumpling is cooking you can mix the glaze.

Whip the butter with a fork or mixer and then gently stir in the brown sugar.

When the dumpling is finished cooking remove it from the water. I let mine sit in the colander for 5-10 minutes.

Then carefully open it up and slice it or spoon it out of the sack. (You could try to transfer it to a pretty platter but mine didn’t make it that far when they found out what I had made.)

Then spoon some of the brown sugar glaze on top, it will melt into the dumpling.

Gently sprinkle, or grate, a bit of nutmeg on top.


I think this would also be good with some vanilla ice cream.

If you aren’t crazy about the brown sugar glaze you can try this one:


  • 1 c. butter, softened
  • 2 c. powdered sugar
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • 2-3 T milk


Whip the butter until fluffy.

Gradually add in the sugar.

Add the vanilla and mix well.

Add just enough milk to make it spoonable.

Serve over the dumping or your favorite dessert.



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