Old pastry called "Chop Suey"

Joined Sep 26, 2011
When I was a kid, around 40 years ago we used to buy these pastries at a local bakery.  I think the people who ran the bakery were Portuguese.  They were little loaves that had raisins, nuts, mollasses and a thin ribbon of fudge that went across the top of them.  They were delicious!! I can't find them or a recipe for them any where. 
Joined Jan 2, 2012
JoyceR, I am looking for this same recipe.  If you find it, please let me know and I will do the same.
Joined Aug 21, 2014
I remember them too.  In fact I was just describing them to my wife and said I thought they went by the name of Chop Suey.  I entered that in a search engine and saw your question.  I was raised in Rhode Island and I remember them being available in local bakeries.  Rhode Island has a large Portuguese population.  I seem to recall a ginger taste to the batter used.  I moved around the country and now live in Michigan.  I haven't seen these in decades.  Thanks for helping my 66 year old memory.
Joined Jul 28, 2001
That's a popular old dessert. You should find a formula online. I remember it as a carrot cake without the carrot and a fudge icing. You might find it in a New England cookbook. That's were I had them.
Joined Dec 8, 2015
Just called JB bakery in Burlington NJ to ask if they sell Chop Suey baked goods. Every Sunday in the late sixties we would drive from church and get Chop Suey buns for breakfast. Of course whomever I spoke with never heard of them and they do not sell them now. I would also like to get a recipe for them. Any suggestions?
Joined Jul 28, 2016
[Ron's. I too was raised in RI, Bristol, and there was a great bakery there, run by a Portuguese family, that made fantastic chop suey pastries. was just telling my husband about them. did you ever find the recipe? I would like to have more of them before I die!
Joined Jun 7, 2017
I just ate a chop suet today, Mario's Bakery in Cranston RI. There are still a handful of bakeries in RI that sell these little loaves. I would best describe them as a hermit -like spice cake with a firm chocolate frosting. I was told they're made with leftover cake scraps but harr to say, may also just be a dense spice cake.
Joined Jan 15, 2016
Does anyone have a picture of these? I would like to see what they look like.

Is it a common practice to 're-purpose' leftover bakery goods?

(That is, use them as the basic ingredient in making a different bakery item.)

Is this safe?  I note two of the grocery chains here in Phoenix do this. They use old (leftover) doughnuts and rolls to make a platter of heavily topped 'pull-apart' pastry, baked and sold in aluminum foil trays about 4 by 12 inches.

The heavy toppings range from, drizzled sugar glazes, fruit/jam paste, Carmel Pecans/walnuts, to a cheese Danish style topping.  
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Joined Feb 17, 2017
I definitely remember making something called chop suey when I was in baking school:

Yeast 75 g

water 825 g

make a yeast slurry in a mixing bowl.  sift flour and place on top of yeast slurry.

bread flour 1500g

place the folllowing ingreds on top of the flour

eggs (2) 90g

salt 30 g

sugar 75 g

cinnamon 15 g

oil 75 g

Mix dough on 1st speed for 2 mins, then to peak development on 2nd speed  (sorry - i forget what this means - baking school was a while ago!!  I think about 8 mins)

now in a new bowl blend together the following:

eggs (4) 195 g

mixed fruit 180 g

raisins 240 g

walnuts 120 g

Dough temp:  84 deg F

bench time 45 mins

punch dough and place in clean plastic tray

with metal scraper chop the fruit mix items into dough

scale into 5 loaves at 680 g and put in well greased tins

proof and bake at 385

After baking drizzle w fondant.
Joined Jul 28, 2001
Weird this came up again. I talked about this very thing a couple of weeks ago. I had the chance to host a visit from a really old friend and his grandchildren for a few days. One of his grandchildren competed in a swimming competition close by.
We enjoyed reminiscing. Keeping in mind, the time we were running together was probably before most here at ChefTalk were born.
We were city boys. He was in the Navy and I'm pretty sure I was still in culinary school. We talked and laughed about all the times his sub was in port in Rhode Island and we'd hit it pretty hard.
At one point he said, remember those times we sucked down a hundred Narraganset ales and when the light was coming up, we would stumble to the bakery to get some Chop Suey.
I asked him about them and if he made them. He was a baker on the sub. I told him I remembered a spice flavor with a chocolate icing.
He said they didn't make them on the sub or ship but they were good because they were not always the same. He tells me they were reworks. Bakeries would use danish or breakfast stales, donut shops would use their stales.
This is him now. Throw stales into the mixer with some milk. Mix until it's like a slurry. add eggs. Then some chopped reworks, a lot of cinnamon spice, including some nutmeg, allspice, cardamom and a lot of ginger. Then add some flour mixed with some baking flour and pop it in the oven.
When they came up some and were cooked, remove them, slam them on the bench, to deflate and refrigerate. Then spread that crappy pineapple filling over the top and ice them.
He said they came about when sailors hit Rode Island. The goal was something exotic that would appeal to the sailors that had eaten all over the world on shore leave. I don't know, pineapple to remember Veterans, and the somewhat pull apart Scenario for fighting.
Joined May 15, 2018
In Oakland County Michigan, there was a Dawn's Donut Shop in Union Lake that served Chop Suey Donuts back in the 1970's. Sadly, they closed, but I still remember that donut. It was made from all the scrap dough left after each batch of donuts of all the other flavors were made each morning. It looked like an apple fritter, but it consisted of peanuts, pineapple & cherry chunks, raisins, and cinnamon. It was glazed and scrumptious! I really miss them and wish I had the recipe so I could make my own.
Joined Oct 24, 2018
When I was a kid, around 40 years ago we used to buy these pastries at a local bakery. I think the people who ran the bakery were Portuguese. They were little loaves that had raisins, nuts, mollasses and a thin ribbon of fudge that went across the top of them. They were delicious!! I can't find them or a recipe for them any where.

1 1/2 c. brown sugar
1 1/2 c. water
1 c. raisins
1/3 c. shortening
1 tsp. ground cloves, allspice, cinnamon and salt
2 c. flour
3 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. vanilla

In a saucepan, combine brown sugar, water, raisins, shortening, spices and salt. Bring to a boil and boil 5 minutes. Cool. Sift flour and baking powder together and add to cooled mixture. Blend in 1 teaspoon vanilla. Pour batter into greased cupcake tins and bake at 375 degrees about 18 minutes. Cool and frost with chocolate frosting. Can be baked in a square 8 or 9 inch pan but bake about 20 to 25 minutes.


1 c. brown sugar
1 c. white sugar
1/2 c. cream or evaporated milk
1/2 c. butter
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. vanilla

Combine brown sugar, white sugar, cream and butter. Boil for 2 1/2 minutes. Remove from heat add baking powder and vanilla. Beat to spreading consistency - spread on cake.
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