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The Origins of Pie

December 6th, 2013 Cooking

Most people would agree that pie can be delicious. But how many people can say they know whose idea it was to stuff certain ingredients into a circular pastry crust, slice wedges out of the dish and serve them as a delicacy?

There is some confusion as to who, in fact, invented the pie. According to Time Magazine, the ancient Greeks can be credited as the first people to combine water and flour together to make dough and bake their favorite meats, which sometimes included seafood. Cato the Younger, son of Cato the Elder, wrote about how much people seemed to be enjoying meat pie and another dessert resembling cheesecake, stated the source.

However, What's Cooking America pointed to different historians who attribute the creation of pie to the ancient Egyptians, who would bake nuts, honey and fruit into bread before serving to them to pharos. The same source said that early crusts were too hard to eat, and pie crusts were originally intended for food storage.
On a somewhat surprising note, Time pointed out that pumpkin pie was almost certainly not served at the first Thanksgiving. The year 1675 marks the earliest appearance of pumpkin pie, but it turns out that Americans didn't start eating it until the 1800s. However, the pilgrims and the Wampanoags may very well have eaten some form of pie, likely containing meat.

Despite the phrase "As American as mom and apple pie," it turns out apple pie is not, in fact, American. While announcing National Apple Pie Day, Punchbowl reported that the earliest known recipe for apple pie appeared in England during 1381. Complementing a slice of apple pie with ice cream, the source said, was apparently a Dutch idea.