Wednesday, April 26, 2017


I thought you might enjoy seeing some more pie imagery.  The two below were served at Hardwick Hall a few years back.

The received wisdom is that British pies are chiefly savory, American pies chiefly sweet – after all, the lad in the movie does not insert his business in among the steak and kidney.

But the rules are blurred.  Of course the British eat sweet pies, apple pies, mince pies, and here’s a rhubarb pie I made earlier (it isn’t the greatest looking pie in the world but it tasted just fine, trust me:

Meanwhile in the USA, you can get a chicken pot pie just about anywhere, and even apparently turkey pies, though I can’t say I’ve ever eaten one.

In any case it seems that this sweet/savory dichotomy is a comparatively recent development.  Modern British and modern American food have evolved from a common ancestor.   American food has become ever less like its old fashioned British counterpart, which it once resembled.  This may be because of jingoism but I think it’s more likely to be because a very different set of immigrants has settled in each country.  I think you’ll have to go a very way in the States to find a curry pie.

But back in the day there was far more of this kind of thing in America:

Interesting too to see that this one is made with canned stew – that was how my mother made her pies back in Yorkshire.

And digging around online I found this extraordinary ad – pizza in the shape of a "real" pie.  

It also once raises the question of whether pineapple belongs with pizza.  You and I, of course, think it doesn’t.  Some, evidently, take a different view.

Meanwhile the British pie continues to mutate.  I suspect the pork pie party may be gone forever, alas:

But Wall’s are – or were – offering, the pepperoni pizza slice which seems to be some kind of missing link between pies and pizzas, without resembling (or improving on) either.  An evolutionary dead end, I'd say.  And I’m not sure whether to be comforted or not by the fact that it’s a "limited edition,"  I mean, please, really.

And finally here’s The Fairy’s Pie or “All the Goodies in One Bite,” an advertising postcard for T. E. Dougherty’s New England Condensed Mince Meat Company, circa 1894.  A sweet pie, no doubt, but one containing beef and suet.  Fusion, yeah?

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