American Pies

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

By Darra Goldstein

Published 2015

  • About
When the first English settlers moved to North America, they took with them, as migrants inevitably do, their own recipes and style of cooking. Just as inevitably, they found the conditions quite different from their homeland, and they had to adapt their cooking to the locally available ingredients. Their English wheat did not thrive in New England, and the settlers were quickly forced to adopt maize as their staple food. The small amount of wheat that was available in the early decades of the colonies was more economically diverted to use in pies rather than bread. This situation surely sowed the seeds of the excellent reputation of New England’s pies, and of its citizens’ love of pies at breakfast.