Gazette Ceases Publication: Donates Archives to LHS

In 2010, the Larchmont Gazette ceased publication. In 2011 the publishers donated all contents to the Larchmont Historical Society, which will continue to make the Gazette archives available online.

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Southern Buttermilk Pie

I can just see you cringing, all of you who are watching your weight. Well, relax. While this isn’t a low-calorie dessert, it’s not terrible either. You see, cultured low-fat buttermilk is actually lower in fat and calories than regular milk, and has “friendly” bacteria added to produce fermentation. This gives it a sensuous thickness and that delicious tang.  My grandmother used to drink it straight, something I’m not quite able to do!  Buttermilk makes this pie so rich and delicious, you’ll be satisfied with a small sliver. Truly.

As a transplanted southerner, I need to make this pie a few times a year, just to get a flavor-hit of home.  It’s the easiest pie ever, because it makes its own crust!


1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup biscuit mix (I use Bisquick)
5 T butter, melted and cooled
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 eggs

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Oil a 9-inch pie pan with vegetable oil or butter.
  • Put all ingredients in a bowl and mix until well until blended and a bit frothy, with a wire whip or handheld mixer.
  • Pour mixture into prepared pan. Bake for about 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Cool for 5 minutes.

This pie keeps well in the refrigerator for several days. You can beautify it with a few raspberries or blueberries scattered on top. Sometimes I add a handful of semi-sweet chocolate bits to the batter before baking,  and shave some dark chocolate ribbons on the top after it comes out of the oven and is cool to the touch.

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8 comments to Southern Buttermilk Pie

  • Ellen

    My grandmother was from Georgia, and I grew up eating this pie. It is one of my favorites. So rich and delicious.

  • Lauren Groveman

    Hi, Judy. I need to correct you on your definition of cultured buttermilk (the one with the acidic “tangy” taste. This is not a by product of churning butter. Cultured buttermilk is a milk product that has had friendly bacteria added to cause fermentation which results in both, a thicker texture and tangy (cultured) flavor. While it is true that most cultured buttermilk (in the supermarket) is made with low fat (or even skim) milk, this differs completely from the liquid left after making butter, which is actually sweet–a bit bland–and nothing like the cultured kind.
    How do you see actual (literal) buttermilk? If you over-whipped heavy cream until it curdles–and if you keep going–you will see that the original substance (heavy cream) will break into two different components: Butterfat (the clumpy stuff–which is what you want to spread on your toast–and the other, is liquid buttermilk. You can see me doing this in a video on my website– It’s actually fun to do (and delicious) and is educational for children to see how butter “happens.”…Wanted to clarify this point so your readers understood the difference between a carton of cultured buttermilk and the other kind–which can only be gotten (today) by churning cream into butter.
    Lauren Groveman

  • Eleanor

    I wonder if Splenda can be substituted for the sugar? Do you have any experience in this substitution? Looks like a great tasting pie.

    • Eleanor, no, I haven’t tried this or really any dessert with a sugar substitute. If there isn’t a medical reason to do it, maybe you could try to cut down on the calories by using a little less sugar. I’m not sure how that would work. Truly, the pie is so rich-tasting, you’ll feel satisfied with just a skinny slice.

  • There are several sugar substitutes in the supermarket that “say” they can be used instead of sugar–with specific amounts. I’d certainly say it’s worth a try! I haven’t used this in my pies but I’m sure that if you looked on the internet, you could find out information (and maybe “user reviews” to help you to discern which products are better than others. Let me know how you do!

  • And the pie does sound and look delish! I plan to try it next week using my homemade biscuit mix (that I also use for scones) instead of the Bisquick. I’ll let you all know how it comes out.

    • Do let us know how it turns out, and maybe give us the recipe for your mix? I know Bisquick is really just the usual dry pancake ingredients pre-mixed, a short-cut. The pie could taste even better without the cheat.