Hamburg Upside Down Pie

Hamburg Upside Down Pie

A Recipe from Jane Ashley’s Newest Recipes for Better Meals (1952)

About the Recipe

Happy Pi Day 2022! With the chaos of a new baby in the house, and time at a premium, I only had time for one pie this year, and wow is this a good one. One of my favorite things about this recipe is that it’s thrifty as heck. Most ingredients I had on hand, and everything I didn’t cost just over $7. The result? A delicious, easy meal that had my husband going back for seconds and thirds!

A few quick adjustments and substitutions on this one – feel free to cut the salt in half. There’s plenty in the sauce and the biscuit, and it was a little much. I used spicy ketchup that I had on hand, which I think gave the whole dish an additional depth of flavor. In the future, I’ll probably substitute the beef for turkey, and maybe throw in some blocks of cheese to get all melty in the middle. A little roasted garlic would also be a big taste add on this one. All in all though, feel free to make it as is and you won’t be disappointed.

Find more Pi Day Recipes here!

About the book

This is actually an advertising book for the Corn Products Refining Company, which includes brands like Karo, Mazola, and Argo, still in use today. Shortly after this book was published, they became the Corn Products Company. Then in 2014, after some mergers and acquisitions activity, they became Ingredion which still exists today.

Jane Ashley seems to have been someone who you might have seen on television sponsoring and cooking with these corn ingredients. There are at least 2 books that she published on behalf of CPRC, this being the later of the two.

Regardless of its origins, this recipe alone has made me want to try more from this book. Interestingly, when I was looking at another cookbook dated in the 1960’s I found 2 recipes from this book, including this one, printed under similar but different names. It makes me wonder where else there may be similar cross pollination.

The Recipe!


2 slices bacon
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 can (10 1/2 oz.) condensed cream of mushroom soup

1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1 lb ground beef
1/4 cup salad oil
1 8-oz. can tomato sauce
2 T catsup
1 t chili powder
1 t salt
1/4 t pepper

1 recipe “Easy-Mix” Flaky Biscuits:
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
3 t baking powder
1 t salt
1/3 cup salad oil
2/3 milk


Sauté onion, green pepper and beef in salad oil in 9-inch frying pan, having oven-proof handle. Separate beef into small pieces as it cooks. Add tomato sauce, catsup, chili powder, salt and pepper.

Prepare biscuit dough as directed in recipe below. Roll biscuit dough to fit frying pan. Place on top of meat mixture.

Bake in hot oven (400*F) for 25 minutes, or until biscuit topping is lightly browned. Turn out on serving plate, crust side down. Serve hot. Makes 6 servings.

“Easy Mix” Flaky Biscuits:

Mix and sift dry ingredients together. Combine salad oil and milk. Pour all at once over surface of flour mixture. Mix with fork to make a soft dough. Shape lightly with hands to make a round ball. Place on wax paper and knead lightly ten times or until smooth.

Pat out to 1/2 inch thickness or roll between 2 squares wax paper (about 12 inches square). Remove top sheet of paper; cut biscuits with unfloured 2-inch biscuit cutter. Place on ungreased baking sheet. Bake in hot oven (450*F) 12-15 minutes. Makes 20.

Cook bacon. Remove and crumble. Cook onion in drippings until tender. Stir in soup, water, salt, and pepper; add potatoes and green beans. Pour into 1 1/2-quart casserole. Stand up frankfurters around edge of casserole. Bake at 350*F for 30 minutes. Garnish with bacon.

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