A slice of the history

The origins of pie

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, holiday foods have been on the mind for most people. Whether it is turkey, cranberry sauce, or mashed potatoes, everyone has a favorite. These foods also have rich history and tradition that accompanies each of them. One food, however, seriously takes the cake with history: pie. 

Pie first came to the world presumably as early as ancient Egyptian times. These pies were made with filling and “reeds.” The reeds were not eaten and were mainly just a mechanism for holding the filling. The origin of pie has also been accredited to ancient Romans who may have gathered this information from the Greeks. The first pie recipe was for a rye crusted goat cheese and honey pie that was published by the Romans. 

During the 14th century in England, meat pies became very popular, often hearty with more crust than filling. The first fruit pies, however, were not produced until the 1500s. The first cherry pie was made for Queen Elizabeth I. 

Colonial America greatly enjoyed pies as well as their England cohorts, and as the colonies grew, so did their access to pie ingredients such as sugar, molasses and honey. In fact, pie is such a pivotal part of colonial America that in the very first American cookbook was a recipe for pumpkin pie that dates all the way back to 1796. 

However, pie making came to a screeching halt in the 19th and 20th century when several cookbooks and magazines released statements about why they disliked pies, however as we are able to see, the pie industry has recovered so well that we now consider pies one of the most American deserts available. Now, we have pie fillings and ready made crusts available in nearly every grocery store. 

What makes pie American? Well to begin with it is a slice of the economy, the American Pie Council estimates that over 700 million dollars worth of apple pie is sold each year in the United States. The apple pie in particular is inherently an American dish. Pilgrims were the ones who first brought apple seeds to the U.S. which eventually turned into apple pies.  It was during the second world war that soldiers began telling journalists at the time that they were fighting for “mom and apple pie.” Since then, the association between the Americans and apple pie is one that has famously crossed the world. 

Pie has been around since the early beginnings of human civilizations, all the way up to the dawn of America. That is why pie is such an important piece of not only the world, but America as well. So bake a pie this Thanksgiving and remember the rich history that comes with each slice.