The Birminghamster
Lowe Knows




by Mrs. Lowe

What ever happened to...

The Pizitz Bake Shop recipe for those cherry-nut filled birthday cakes? I would LOVE to have one of those things again! My daughter and my friend, Sharon, could literally bury their faces in one right now (and truthfully, THAT is what I would LOVE to see again). The cakes and icing were sort of almond flavored, like the petit fore's at Savage's. Does anybody know?

The bakery on the corner of Greensprings and Oxmoor in the 1960s which had THE BEST chocolate fudge brownies ever made? My son was brought up on them -- in and out of the womb. They are in his genetic DNA and he still turns to their likeness whenever he is stressed out or just needs a little love. Does anybody know?

The Purifoy Hotel? I only went there once or twice when I was a teenager but people my age, especially the men, still talk about having dinner there, boarding house style, with HUGE bowls of the best vegetables, fried chicken and deserts beyond compare. The only problem was, if you took a date, you might be plagued with gastronomical distress on the way home. That was OK though since a lot of cars didn't have AC in those days! Of course, if it was winter there might be a problem. After the first time, smart girls knew not to mention the wind blowing their beehives - - - those windows were down for a reason! Anyway, does anybody know -- what happened to the Purifoy?

To Dale's Cellar in Homewood? How could their steak sauce still be around but they are not? I once made a guy take me and Sharon there and buy us both a steak with no intention of spending any time with him for his expense and trouble, if you know what I mean. We were both dateless that night and hungry to boot so when he asked if he could take me out, I said "Well, yeah, but see, my friend and I had planned on going out to dinner at Dale's and I hate to back out on her." You know the rest but do you know what happened to Dale 's Cellar?

The Pig Trail Inn, once across the street from Dale's former location in Homewood? Remember? When I was in high school at the old Shades Valley, it was the most popular after school spot because you could walk there and bum a ride to your house with somebody who had already gone home to get their Mom's car! Of course, you got to cruise around the 'hood first! Gas was cheap. The most repeated line at 3:00 in 1959? "See you at the PIG!" To be honest, I don't remember if their 'Que was any good or not - I didn't go there for the food! I would just like to know whatever happened to the Pig?

The Hollywood Country Club? I spent so many Saturday's and Sunday's there trying to contract skin cancer! It worked - I have had several removed! But you just could not get through the summer without going to Hollywood to the pool. I was so tanned and pretty. Whatever happened to that girl?.......uh, I mean that place?

And how about Auto Movies No. 1? Remember that, on the Bessemer Super Highway? We used to load up the trunk with as many as would fit and crash the gate . The driver and shot gun would get out of the car, go stand at the back, open the trunk, let out the crashers and then mosey on over to the concession stand for some popcorn and a coke. That would give the crasher couple time to hop in the back seat and fog up the windows a bit before we got back! I think I know what happened to Auto Movies No. 1. They probably closed it down long before the AIDS epidemic put a scare in the single scene. They certainly didn't need to show any X-rated movies -- you could just look in the window of the next car!

What about the Five O'clock Club? I don't know why they would have closed that place down! It had the very best dance floor in town back in 1963. I saw the Drifters and the Temptations there before they were really famous and learned their little dance routine right along with about half of the Birmingham singles in those days. There were a few guys I danced with there that I would love to see again. I would just like to know if they still have it in 'em!

If any of you out there know what happened to these places I wish you would write. I would be interested in knowing if I am the only one still alive who remembers them. I have a good brownie recipe (but not from the bakery on Greensprings) which I have to break out and make for my son from time to time. I will share and you can decide if it helps you as it does him.

(from scratch of course)

2 Cups Sugar
4 Eggs
1 Cup all-purpose flour
2 Tsp. vanilla
1/2 Cup cocoa
1 Cup pecans
1 Cup butter (softened)
Pinch of Salt

Combine above ingredients. Beat 4 minutes at medium speed. Stir in chopped pecans. Spread batter evenly in a 11x9 inch pan. Bake at 325* for 35 to 40 minutes or until wooden pick comes out clean. Cut in squares and serve to hungry little boys to make them hush and become the little horned angels they really are.