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An Introduction to Pies

strawberry tart

In 1902, the English suggested that pies should only be eaten twice a week. The New York Times responded with, “Pie is the American synonym of prosperity, and its varying contents the calendar of the changing seasons. Pie is the food of the heroic. No pie-eating people can ever be permanently vanquished.”

Although Europeans have been eating pies since at least the 1400s, Americans eat more of them that any other group of people. In fact, some pies are especially associated with the United States. In addition to the apple pie, which makes use of this common American fruit, there is also the pumpkin pie and the Pennsylvanian Dutch shoofly pies made with molasses. There are even types of pies associated with specific regions of the U.S.

During this month of March 2017, Carma’s Cookery will be publishing a plethora of information about pies, from memories to tips to recipes. Each day you’ll find something new about pies.

But What Makes a Pie a Pie?

pecan pieA pie is any dish with a crust, either on the top, the bottom or both, and the crust can be made from crumbs, meringues, biscuits or pastry. Pies are almost always cooked in a shallow dish with sloping sides.

One of my favorite types of savory pie (non-dessert pie) is the pizza! I learned how to make a tasty yeast-based crust from my grandmother and developed a rich and flavorful sauce from a recipie I learned in a Junior High cooking class. I’ve been able to make my own pizza for people from around the world — literally, I made it when I was an exchange studen in England for my fellow youth work campers from England, France and India!

pizza pieA tart is another type of pie. Tarts are always open-faced and usually have a pastry-style crust. Small tarts are sometimes called tartlets. Originally, pies were deep dish and filled with meats, while tarts were meant for dessert. However, after the American Revolution, when sugar became scarce and housewives needed to be thrifty, shallow pies of all types were developed because they required less filling.

A quiche is also a type of pie. Made with eggs and milk or cream, it is usually filled with cheese and veggies and meats. Back in the 1980s, when the book Real Men Don’t Eat Quiche came out, my father got onto a quiche-making binge. He’d make tons of them and freeze them. Then we’d have them every night for dinner. I have to say, it took be awhile to get my taste for quiche back! But when they are fluffy and cheesy, I just can’t get enough!


I hope you’ll continue to come back to this blog and read more about pies from my many special guests. Each one is an expert in pies, pastries, baking or some other related topic.

NOTE: Part of this article was excerpted from my book, Your Perfect Pie.


Create Your Own Unique Pies!

Your Perfect Pie by Carma SpenceDoes pie making daunt you? Are you wary of deviating from any pie-recipe you find, for fear that you’ll ruin the flavor of the resulting pie?

It doesn’t have to be that way!

Pie-Palooza 2017 is brought to you by Your Perfect Pie, a cookbook that breaks down pies into easily made component parts so you can unleash your pie-making creativity. Available on Amazon in both print and Kindle formats. Grab your copy today and start creating your perfect pie!


Welcome to Carma's Cookery's Pie-Palooza 2017 - A month of pie legend, lore and love

Miss previous posts? Find links to them here.

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About the author

Carma Spence has been experimenting in the kitchen since she was four years old and loves trying out new recipe ideas. She is the author of Bonkers for Bundt Cakes and Your Perfect Pie, as well as author and contributor to several more non-food-related books. With Carma's Cookery, she is taking her passion for empowering people and blending it with her passion for cooking, gift-giving and entertaining.

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