A pie is a baked dish made by lining a shallow container with pastry and filling the container with various sweet and savory ingredients. A freshly baked pie touches all the senses, making it a true masterpiece of gastronomical engineering.
Where did pies originate from?
When it comes to the history of pie, most food historians agree that the roots of pie can be traced to the ancient Egyptians during the Neolithic Period. Dating back to 9500BC, the pies had a honey filling covered in a crusty cake made from oats, wheat, rye, or barley. The pies were rustic, free form in shape, and were called Galettes.
However, some believe that pie pastry originated from Ancient Greece and that the Egyptians learned to prepare the dish from them. The Greeks used flour and water to form a paste that they then wrapped around meat and other fillings, which they cooked over an open fire. The plays of the writer, Aristophanes, note that the trade of pastry-cook was separate from that of a baker during that period.
However, the idea of enclosing a filling inside a sort-of-pastry made from flour and oil originated in Ancient Rome, which they called Placenta Cake. It was the closest to what we now know as pies, but this version was often used as an offering to the gods. A Roman cookbook from the 1st Century, called Apicius, mentions recipes that include pie cases.
With the Romans came roads, and that was how their pies and the recipes found their way around all parts of Europe. The modern-day pie originally appeared in England as early as the twelfth Century. The first pies had mainly meat fillings and required less material to bake than bread.
What are some popular flavors/fillings?
Most people who prefer cake think it is a better choice, but we think that’s a biased judgment. Pie deserves a little more respect than it is getting, and we have compiled the most popular pie fillings out there, which you should consider giving a try.
- Apple pie: With a combination of flavors that include crispy apples, the sweetness of sugar, the spice blend, and more, the apple pie is unarguably the greatest pie out there.
- Cherry pie: Cherry pie is a truly delicious dessert choice that your family and guests will enjoy if you serve it. The bright color of the filling and the slight tartness of the cherries make it sure treat for your taste buds.
- Lemon meringue: This is a truly picturesque pie with its perfect yellow lemon curd and fluffy white meringue, and you can be sure to enjoy all its goodness if you make it from scratch.
- Blueberry pie: Blueberry pie is the king of berry pies, but make sure you don’t attempt to eat it while wearing white. But if it stains your clothes, you will readily agree that it is worth it!
- Pumpkin pie: This pie is one of the best bets for your belly as it is delicious. It can warm anyone’s heart when served with a bit of whipped cream on top.
Some fun facts about pie
If you want to increase your knowledge of all things pie, here are seven interesting facts about pie:
- Pies in the middle ages were not filled with the sweet fillings we are familiar with today; they were actually filled with different types of decadent meat.
- According to a recent survey, pumpkin pie is America’s favorite pie flavor, followed by pecan, apple sweet potato.
- 1 in every 5 Americans who eat pie claims to have eaten an entire pie by themselves.
- Boston Cream Pie is actually cake.
- The most expensive piece was sold for over £1,000 for single slice.
- There’s a world-famous pie-eating contest in the UK that’s been ongoing since 1992 called the ‘World Pie Eating Championship.’
Now that you know so much about pie, you can go ahead to prepare the dish for your family as well as show off your knowledge to your friends.
1. Spinning J Bakery
Spinning J Bakery is located on the street corner. They offer many unique flavors of pies. They have a bar to sit to enjoy your morning coffee. The most popular flavor of pie they sell is the key lime hibiscus pie which is sweet and tangy. They make a certain number of pies that they sell as a whole or by the slice. Ice cream is also an option to have on the side.
2. Hoosier Mama Pie Company
1618 1/2 Chicago Ave Chicago, IL 60622
Hoosier Mama Pie Company has over 20 pie flavors to choose from! That’s a lot of choices. They sell it by the slice or you can buy it as a whole pie. The pies have a crunchy crust that keeps people coming back for more.
3. Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits
Bang Bang Pie is a must visit when it comes to pies. Each pie is made with fresh seasonal ingredients which then helps rotate about 6 new new menu pies daily. Some people like the idea of having new items on the menu, while others want their favorite pie to stay on the menu forever. So it is recommended to call ahead and ask what is on the menu that day. You can buy by the slice or the whole pie, but between us, you’re probably going to need the whole pie.
4. Sweet Mandy B's
Sweet Mandy B’s is a bakery that specializes in cakes and cupcakes but also offers pies. The most popular pie they sell is the key lime pie. Many have raved about their peanut butter pie. Customers keep flying through the door for more.
5. First Slice
This is not your usual pie shop. First Slice is a non for profit pie shop. They seek to help out the hungry in Chicago and help those in need. The most popular pie they sell is the French Silk pie. And the craziest pie they have is the Tabasco pie, which is only available in the mini size. So you can try the Tabasco if you dare. Was that a challenge? Maybe.
Defloured offers vegan and gluten-free options so that people who suffer from Celiac disease can easily walk through the shop and get some delicious sweets. The pies are made to order which needs a 7 day lead time in advance.
7. Bittersweet Pastry Shop
Bittersweet Pastry Shop is a European style pastry shop that is located in the Lakeview neighborhood. They offer holiday pies and their regular menu pies as well.
8. Cafe Selmarie
Cafe Selmarie is not your typical pie shop but it offers a cozy dining room experience. The ingredients used are always fresh and high quality. This European style bakery has several pies to choose from and even has seasonal pies.