Author Ann H Gabhart Shares Shaker Lemon Pie Recipe

Ann Gabhart

My guest today is author Ann H Gabhart who writes stories about another sect of Plain People, the Shakers. There are no longer any active Shaker colonies but they were an active group on the American frontier at one time. Ann is offering a book giveaway and sharing her Shaker Lemon Pie Recipe. Here’s Ann:

A Shaker Recipe

My mother made a yummy lemon pie, but it was nothing like the Shaker lemon pie. Either pie lovers savor this taste treat or don’t like at all. The first time I tried it at the Shaker Village restaurant, long before I published any Shaker books, I didn’t care for its tartness. But the passing years must have changed my taste buds. Now that combination of tartness and sweetness seems just right.

The Shakers were a thrifty people and when their brethren brought back lemons from their southern trading trips, they were determined to not let any part of the lemon go to waste. Thus, we have their unique lemon pie. The simple recipe has only three ingredients.


2 large lemons

2 C sugar        

4 eggs, well beaten

Slice lemons as thin as paper, rind and all. (The thinness of the slices is the secret to this pie.) Combine with sugar, mix well. Let stand at least 2 hours, but preferably overnight, blending occasionally. Add beaten eggs to the lemon mixture; mix well. Turn into an uncooked nine inch pie shell, arranging lemon slices evenly. Sprinkle a bit more sugar on the lemon mixture. Cover with top crust. Cut several slits near center. Bake at 450 degrees for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 375 degrees and bake for about 20 minutes or until a silver knife inserted near edge of pie comes out clean. Cool before serving.

While the Shakers lived an austere life in some ways, they always had plentiful food on their tables.

The Innocent

To purchase, click here. The Innocent: A Novel

In my new Shaker book, The Innocent, that is one of the things Carlyn Kearney depends on when she goes to the Harmony Hill Shaker Village. When her husband doesn’t come home from the Civil War, she needs a roof over her head and a table to put her feet under at mealtimes. The Shaker Village seems to be the perfect answer. She can work in exchange for her keep. But there are many parts of the Shaker way that she cannot accept. However, she’s thankful for the gardens and the plentiful food.”–Ann


The Innocent by Ann H. Gabhart

Carlyn Kearney has spent two lonely years not knowing whether to mourn or to hope after she receives word from the Union Army that her husband is missing. The War Between the States ends without further word. Now penniless, in debt, and forced from her home, Carlyn seeks refuge at the Shaker village of Harmony Hill, only to discover that they will not allow her to keep the dog that has been her faithful companion since her husband went off to war. Sheriff Mitchell Brody has pity on the lovely young woman and agrees to take the dog. Carlyn is just settling into life as a sister in the Shaker village when she receives a devastating letter confirming her worst fears. As she wrestles with whether to commit herself fully to the Shaker life, mysterious deaths begin to occur, and Carlyn comes under suspicion. Can Sheriff Mitchell help her expose the true culprit?

Ann, that sounds like a great very simple recipe and an interesting book! There were sadly so many widows left by the Civil War on both sides. I hadn’t thought about one seeking a shelter at a Shaker Village. Excellent. Now for the QUESTION: Do you enjoy a suspense thread in a novel? Why or why not?–Lyn

For more online: for Ann’s

a Shaker Wednesday post,

Sunday Morning Coming Down,

Friday smiles and more.



About Lyn Cote

Lyn Cote welcomes other authors to her "Strong Women, Brave Stories" blog to share stories of women who triumph over the challenges common to all women.
This entry was posted in Book Giveaway, New Book Release, Plain People and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

40 Responses to Author Ann H Gabhart Shares Shaker Lemon Pie Recipe

  1. Gail Hollingsworth says:

    I love just enough suspense to keep me guessing right up to the end. And I love lemon pie!

    • Ann says:

      And it doesn’t have to be necessarily mystery life and death suspense, Gail. Sometimes it’s whether the characters are going to fall in love and if they do admit to being love, whether they can live happily ever after. Or it can be any of a dozen other tense conflicts in the story. I love lemon pie too.

  2. TAMMY CUEVAS says:

    I need to try this recipe, because I love lemon pie.

    • Ann says:

      This pie is not your normal lemon pie, but if you like lemon and tart you might just like this pie, Tammy. Let me know if you make it and like it.

  3. Karen G. says:

    Hope to try the lemon pie someday. I’ve seen it a long time ago and wanted to try it but lost the place I saw the recipe. I saved it in my recipe file this time. I love suspense in a novel especially when it keeps you on the edge of your seat waiting to find out what happens.

    • Ann says:

      That’s the best kind of suspense, Karen, and what makes us keep turning pages in any kind of book. Hope you will give the pie a try.

  4. Ann M says:

    I love a bit of mystery and suspense in everything I read. But not in my life. 😀

  5. Kaye Whitney says:

    I like suspense in stories. Otherwise it’s just a recitation of events.

    • Ann says:

      You’ve got a point, Kaye. Suspense doesn’t have to only mean mysteries. The suspense of what happens next needs to me in all stories.

  6. Sharrie says:

    The pie looks delish and yes, I do like a little mystery in Amish stories. Thanks for the opportunity to win.

    • Ann says:

      The pie is definitely different, Sharrie, but if you like tart you might like it. Maybe mystery in stories is the same. Adds a bit of tartness.

  7. Ann Chilton says:

    I love suspense. It’s almost all I read.

    • Ann says:

      I like mystery stories, Ann, but I like other type of stories too. The kind that keep me wanting to turn pages to find out what happens next is the best.

  8. Lillian Weller says:

    The lemon pie looks delicious, but tried it years ago and didn’t like it near as good as my Grandmother’s lemon pie!

    • Ann says:

      Grandma’s pie is always better than anyone else’s, Lillian. But you’re right about it being a pretty pie all dressed up with lemon slices.

  9. Javkie Bentley says:

    I would love to read this book! The pie looks good too!

    • Ann says:

      I hope you will enjoy the story when you get a chance to read it, Javkie. And a piece of pie while you’re reading would be nice!

  10. Shirley Miller says:

    Love suspense!! Makes a good book even better! ?

    • Ann says:

      Thanks for dropping by, Shirley. I like some suspense as long at it’s not monsters on the other side of the door. 🙂

  11. Ola Norman says:

    I like some suspense. Makes for a more interesting book.

  12. Sandi Freed Ansell says:

    I enjoy a little suspense in a novel and never read a Gabhart book that I didn’t love!

  13. Bonnie Roof says:

    That’s an interesting pie recipe, Ann. I’d like to try this pie when I next visit Shaker Village; I’m not normally one who enjoys very tart pies, but my curiosity is aroused re: those paper thin-slices and rind in this recipe. I’m wondering how much practice it took to master the art of cutting those paper-thin slices, lol, I couldn’t do it.

    I do enjoy a suspense thread in novels – I like to be kept guessing when I’m reading.

    Shared post!!

    • Ann says:

      Thank you for sharing the post, Bonnie. I appreciate that. And thinking I couldn’t cut the lemons thin enough is why I haven’t tried to make the pie yet. You’d have to have a very, very sharp nice and I can just see me slicing my finger instead of the lemon! But you should give it a try next time you go to Shaker village. However, if you don’t like tart, you may not like it. First time I ate it, I was greatly disappointed. Then it grew on me.

      I too like to be kept guessing while I’m reading.

  14. Robin Bunting says:

    oh my, does this pie sound yummy!!!

  15. Laurie Bergh says:

    I have seen many lemon pie recipes but I don’t recall one where you just slice the lemons real thin and sugar them and let them sit overnight that way and then put the rest of it together and bake it the next day. It looks like something I would like to try!

  16. Rachel Lepree says:

    Yes, I always enjoy a little suspense in a novel – if it is done well, it keeps you guessing until the end.

    • Ann says:

      That is what keeps us reading, isn’t it, Rachel? The trick for a writer is finding a way to make the reader keep turning pages.

  17. Donna Harmon says:

    I love threads of suspense. We all have suspense and drama in our lives and makes the story more “real”.

    • Ann says:

      I’m like someone else who commented here, Donna. I want to keep the scary suspense in my stories and not in my life. I want good drama in my real life.

  18. Jane Squires says:

    Yes I always love some suspense in books. This sounds like a good read.

  19. Diane Blaser says:

    I love some suspense in a novel! All genres of books are interesting to me and The Innocent sounds like a fabulous read. Thank you for the chance to learn more about it Ann and Lyn!

    • Ann says:

      I like a little mystery mixed into the stories I read too, Diane. Hope you will give my story a try. Thanks for dropping by to check out the lemon pie recipe.

  20. Sunnie says:

    I forgot to answer the question. Yes, I love suspense in a novel. It is because it keeps me reading because I have to see what happens next!

  21. Sunnie says:

    That looks like a super nummy recipe. I will be trying it! And the book cover is beautiful. I would love to read this.

    • Ann says:

      Let me know if you like it, Sunnie. I haven’t actually made the pie, but I keep thinking I will if only I can slice the lemons that thin. I did visit a book club once and the hostess made the lemon pie for us. That was fun. Thanks for dropping by.