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United States of Pie: Regional Favorites from East to West and North to South Paperback


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United States of Pie: Regional Favorites from East to West and North to South + A Year of Pies: A Seasonal Tour of Home Baked Pies + The Lost Art of Pie Making Made Easy
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Ecco (May 22, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006206407X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062064073
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 7.3 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #566,258 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"A charming recipe collection...Kane's book includes the most thorough instructions we've seen yet on mastering pie dough; so whether you're new to the form, or a been-there, done-that pie aficionado, you'll find so much to love in these pages!" -Matt Lee and Ted Lee, authors of The Lee Bros. Simple Fresh Southern

"This colorful, varied collection by a blogger, recipe developer, and food writer may well be the definitive resource on the all-American pie." -Publishers Weekly

Selected by National Public Radio (NPR) as one of the Top 10 Summer Cookbooks for 2012.

"The charming book offers pies that reflect the country's varying palates and personalities, from Concord Grape pie in New England to Hoosier Pie in the Midwest to Olallieberry in the Pacific Northwest...Pies like this make me proud to be American." - Marissa Rothkopf Bates

"Kane's recipes, and the sweet stories that surround them, make another good case for knocking the cupcake craze to the curb. Their simple goodness makes this book deserving of a place on a baker's shelves..." -New York Journal of Books

From the Back Cover

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.


More About the Author

Adrienne Kane is the author of the cookbook United States of Pie, 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, Prevention, Women's Day, Yankee Magazine and on Chow and foodandwine.com. She lives and cooks in New Haven, Connecticut.

Customer Reviews

Lots of background information also.
amarillogirl1
I love to cook and bake, but haven't had the chance to use any of these recipes yet.....but, looking forward to it......saw some good ones inside!!
Roxanne G
I recommend this book to all bakers and pie lovers!
Craftylady

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By CakeBaker on May 24, 2012
Format: Paperback
This is one of those books that is as fun to read as it is to cook from! The recipes are enticing, yes, and the few that I have already tried have turned out incredibly! But Kane includes such great tidbits (from what appears to be significant research and travel) that it is just as exciting to get the backstory of a pie as it is to watch it come out of the oven. I find myself enchanted by the author's voice as she introduces me to such novelties as Poppy Seed Pie and Chipmunk Pie and reacquaints me with old standbys like Pecan Pie or Apple Pie, describing their history with such lucid insight that they seem novel and enticing. Beyond a cookbook of stellar recipes, then, this book offers us a portion of our collective history (culled from community cookbooks, old magazines, regional baking experts with generations of experience behind their rolling pins) served up by the slice. But I also love that these recipes have been updated for the modern palette; too many of my own attempts at baking out of old cookbooks and recipes passed down through a family have yielded sugar-bombs or strange and unappealing flavor profiles. Kane seems to have struck the magic balance in both preserving the heart and soul of these cherished recipes and making them appealing to a broader spectrum of modern day eaters.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Joanna Daneman #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 4, 2012
Format: Paperback
This book starts out with CRUSTS, the bane of making a pie and the reason so many of us "cheat" and use premade crusts. But I do know how to make a crust and there is nothing compared to a good homemade crust. No store-bought frozen or mix crust can come close to the tenderness, the fresh flavor of good flour, butter or other fresh ingredients, gently mixed and rolled precisely to maximize flakiness and tenderness. The basic crusts are all here; standard (shortening), butter crust, lard crust, graham cracker and cookie crumb crusts, cornmeal, gingersnap and sour cream. (The ones missing are the press-in nut based crusts often used in vegan cooking but this is a book on pie, not health food. I get that.)

Then on to the pies. We go regional, Northeast (including Concord grape, shoo-fly, a local fave around here in Amish country), Midwest (which has, predictably, America's faves like cherry but most of the unusual pies, like Poppyseed, Hoosier Cream Pie and Burnt Sugar), the West for berries of the Northwest, Meyer Lemon among others, and the South for famous pies such as Pecan, Peach and Chess.

This book is valuable for the crusts alone. Crusts should be home-made if you really want your pie to shine. I've cheated and used store crusts, but when I am serious about pie, I make my apple pie with a particular crust using a touch of baking powder to make a sort of "poolish" (wet dough base) from a recipe gleaned out of Yankee Magazine.There is something a bit magical about pie. Cakes, well, they are good but you see them at birthday parties, office events, picnics, etc. But pie..that takes art. Even with pre-made crust, you still have to mix a custard, cut some fruit, make a filling. So pies are special. That pie isn't in this book, but many others that I like to make are in here, and I appreciate the dough instructions. If you want to make a signature pie that really stands out, this book can help.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Sarah Kleinman on May 30, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm that person that is a good cook but a lousy baker - something about the exactness of each recipe has always intimidated me and kept me from making the delicious desserts that I dreamed of.

This amazing book changed all that! Besides providing great stories about the histories of each of the pies in the book - the recipes are amazingly easy to follow and turn out wonderfully!

I surprised my friends with the Salted Peanut Pie at a recent party and there was no doubt that the Pie was a hit!! I can't wait to tackle another one of the tasty recipes this book has to offer.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Constance Hyman on June 21, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
........you'll really enjoy this book! I bought it for a relative who is a fabulous baker (especially pies!) to add to his library of baking books. Well, now I have to buy another one for him, as I'm keeping this one for myself! The stories introducing each pie, the regional information, the clearly-written directions and the practical tips are terrific! It's a wonderful read and makes you want to bake a pie, which in my case is really saying something!
Given the great price on Amazon, I'm also buying a few as hostess gifts!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Peter Grant on August 30, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Kane places regional pies in a cultural setting and gives some background and history to sharpen your appetite. If you could care less about where a particular pie came from, just read the recipes, which are terrific. She updates tradition by, say, adding a bit more lemon and a bit less sugar, which shows her creative side. It's like having a best friend in the kitchen who is a better cook and shows you just how to do it. As a coworker of mine said when she was drooling over the recipes, "With this book, making a pie is a piece of cake!"
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Todd on July 12, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
While we've only made two pies so far--Peach and Bakewell--they are astonishing. Truly the best pies we have ever tasted. I couldn't recommend this book more highly. We're making two more pies this weekend as gifts.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Janet Norton on September 13, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Some very unusual recipes included in this book. Will share with a friend who is an experienced pie baker. Will add to your repetoir of recipes !
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