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September 30th, 2008

Why Not Pie?

I need to share with everyone a disturbing new trend that both my wife and I have noticed: some people don’t like pie. At all. This is happening in our circle of friends and outside of it as well. The reasoning varies from person to person of course. Some people are against certain types of pies. Some are against the concept of having a filling in-between two layers of crust. Some think they’re messy. Others think they aren’t very good.

I’m here to tell you that all of these people are wrong. Pie is delicious!

The pie structure in and of itself is just about perfect. A top crust for a flavor and texture variation with a savory or sweet filling and a bottom crust supporting the endeavor. It’s like a sandwich but better. Now, I can imagine some people complain about pie filling spilling out and making a mess; this is a known limitation with the structure. But let me suggest that it’s actually a feature: pie is not meant to be portable; it’s meant to be delicious. And even if it’s structurally unsound, it’s still tasty.

Fillings are a whole other matter. I have friends who have been burned by bad pie fillings which in this case usually mean some fruity slop. Apple pie filling with meager bits of apple and lots of goop, for instance. Friends, I can understand this dilemma but let me stress to you that it’s simply a matter of having a bad pie. Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater on this one. A good compote balances out the syrup and the fruit and may in fact lean towards the dangerous all fruit end of the spectrum.

Variations on crust matter, too. From what I’ve learned from my wife, a woman well-versed in pies thanks to her upbringing, crusts can make or break a pie. This is a fact. If a pie is structurally unsound, has a delicious filling, and has a lousy crust then it too is a bad pie. Store-bought pie crusts in particular fall into this trap as they are manufactured to last 18-543 months in one’s freezer and not contain the delicate flaky yet supportive balance a good crust requires. In a pinch, perhaps, but never as a substitute for homemade.

Worse still is the sham some restaurants pull on patrons by claiming a pie is “home made” when in reality the crust was purchased from a random gigantic food service company. This too leads to people casting off pie forever – a truly sad occasion.

Everyone, let’s see if we can agree on this: pie is a wonderful treat, a delicious concoction that can warm the heart and satisfy a hunger. If you’ve had a bad pie in the past I implore you to not dismiss all pies as bad but to consider, simply, that good pies are a little harder to find – or make.

Pie can bring us together. Democrats, Republicans, and Independents love pie. Terrorists love pie. Patriots love pie. Dog owners love pie, and cat owners love pie. Cubs fans love pie. Sox fans think Cubs fans suck but they, too, love pie.

Pie is our national destiny. Pie is our common bond. For 2008, I’m voting for pie.

Posted in Food and Beverage

jk October 1, 2008, 2:30 am

Oh my gosh, I hate pie! Thank you for a Ping theme that has gotten me all fired up.

I am serious. I have a humorous photo of myself looking angry in a pie delivery truck in CA. Can we start posting photos here?

Ryan October 1, 2008, 5:42 pm

Send it along and we will post it, jk.

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