An utterly charming collection of regional heirloom American pies, from long-lost recipes to classic favorites, sweetly illustrated and chock-full of time-tested baking tips and secrets for perfect pies
Before cooking shows and celebrity chefs there were church dinners, community bake sales, and county fairs—events for which regular women made and served their prized family recipes, especially for that homiest and most American of desserts, pie. In the United States of Pie, Adrienne Kane invites readers on a journey back in time as she scours the country for—and shares—those recipes: the pies that have come to define culinary traditions from the West Coast to the East Coast, from the Midwest to the South.
Sourced from old newspaper clippings, out-of-print cookbooks, housekeeping guides, and the spiral-bound, mimeographed booklets of church groups and community associations, the recipes in the United States of Pie showcase the innovative spirit of American home cooks in the era before processed foods and flavorless, imported produce took over grocery shelves. Here, tested and updated for contemporary palates and with an emphasis on local, seasonal fruit and dairy products, are both re-imagined classics and newly invented creations that celebrate sharing lovingly homemade desserts with friends and family. And whether you’re serving up slices of Meyer Lemon Cream Pie, Concord Grape Pie, or Burnt Sugar Meringue Pie, your lucky guests will definitely ask for seconds.
With helpful sidebars on baking tips and techniques ranging from the best thickeners for fruit pies to why home bakers should embrace corn syrup, a chapter dedicated to how to make the perfect pie crust, and charming, insightful essays on pie-making traditions around the country, the United States of Pie is more than just a cookbook; it’s a must-have baking resource for novice and expert pie makers alike.
About Adrienne Kane
Adrienne Kane is the author of the memoir Cooking and Screaming and of the popular food blog www.nosheteria.com. She is a food writer, recipe developer, and food photographer whose work has appeared in Natural Health andPrevention and on Chow and foodandwine.com. She lives and cooks in New Haven, Connecticut.
A Pie For All Regions: Serving Up The American Slice
NPR Book Review – July 4, 2012 (Excerpt)
We hold this truth to be self-evident: America loves pie. We, the people, a nation of bakers and eaters, value the art of creating that crispy, gooey, fluffy, fruity dessert — and each region reserves the right to bake the treat in its own individual style.
Food writer Adrienne Kane celebrates that right. She has gathered those regional pie recipes into a new cookbook, United States of Pie. To demonstrate the regional range in American pies, Kane brought two samples to her interview at NPR’s studio: a Chocolate Raisin Pie, from the West Coast, and a Bakewell Pie, from the Northeast.
Kane tells NPR’s Linda Wertheimer that the buttery, tart Bakewell Pie actually has its roots in Europe, which is fitting given the Northeast’s colonial history.
“[The] Bakewell Pie is adapted from the very common English dessert, Bakewell Tart,” she says. “I found the Bakewell Pie recipe in an 1886 cookbook called The Unrivalled Cook-book and [Housekeeper's] Guide. It’s a raspberry jam on the bottom, and then an almond meal sponge on top. It’s not too sweet, so it’s kind of perfect for breakfast, if you like that sort of thing — and I happen to like that sort of thing.” [Read the full article...]
We are the only country that makes guns, including military-style assault weapons, available to anyone who wants to buy them. This is not freedom. It is a tyranny of death and destruction — a tyranny of which the National Rifle Association is proud. The Washington Post
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