America just celebrated National Pie Day. Or, so I’m told. Who knew there was such a thing? There was no National Pie Day Sale or National Pie Festival or National Pie Parade down Main Street.
But, maybe there should have been.
I like pie. My dear sister-in Christ Jesus, the late Myrtice Walker Chancey, was the biggest pie fan I’ve known. She would never say it. She would spell it out: P-I-E. She would have approved of a National Pie Day.
I came across the existence of National Pie Day in one of the Journalism industry “idea” reports I receive daily. Hence, you are reading this column. It gave me an idea of what to write about this week.
The people who study these kinds of things set out to determine what is the most popular pie in America.
The Top Ten are peanut butter, blueberry, sugar, sweet potato, cream, pecan, key lime, pot pie, pumpkin and apple.
I’m not surprised the number one pie in America is apple. It’s probably written somewhere in the Constitution. Or, maybe it was the Declaration of Independence. We have the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, which includes eating apple pie with a large scoop of ice cream on top.
It says it right there in that saying we say all the time: It’s as American as apple pie.
Grandma Deal loved apple pie. For a long time after she was called up to heaven, I would get all teary eyed around the pies at restaurants. People thought I was crazy crying over apple pie, probably, but that’s o.k. It’s a free country and it is as American as apple pie to cry about apples if you want to. That’s in the Constitution, too.
Grandma also liked one of the other pies in the top 10 — blueberry pie. However, her blueberry pie didn’t have a crust on it and you didn’t put it in a pan.
Her version was blueberries cooked in a pot with the crust in the shape of sweet dough that I can only describe as being in dumpling form. That was, as she called it, “berry pie”. It was a great big pot full of indigo colored goodness, or so she said. I never ate it that way. It was a throw back to her childhood. Her father died shortly before she was born, so her maternal grandfather, John Tyre, took up time with her and she had the place of honor sitting with him at Sunday dinner in her coming up years. She often said she felt secure and loved eating “berry pie” in his lap.
That’s as American as apple pie, too.
I can’t go along with the pie survey takers, rankers, voters or prognosticators or whoever they are when it comes to ranking sweet potato and pumpkin pies up so high in the survey.
You see, I have an aversion to any food that is waxy in texture, which gives me the notion that it is made out of color crayons. Same goes for green beans and carrots. It’s the texture thing. So, I don’t eat sweet potato or pumpkin pies. And, I don’t have to. It’s as American as apple pie to eat what you want and not eat what you don’t want.
I can go along with peanut butter and pecan and key lime, but who in the world voted for sugar, cream or pot pies?
Pot pies are for folks who need to throw something together for supper. So, they clean out all the mixed vegetables including the waxy green beans and carrots, put some chicken or beef or something in it, put a crust over it and call it pie. That’s not a pie. It’s not even American to call it a pie. It’s not sweet.
As for cream and sugar pie, all I can say is they must have been thought up by people who have never been in a kitchen. A pie should be sweet and most have some sort of cream either on them or you can eat them with it. Whoever put down sugar and cream pies as the most popular pie is either lazy, doesn’t know what constitutes good eating or didn’t understand the poll question.
The travesty of this survey is what I was saving until last.
There is no coconut pie on the list. What is wrong with these people?
Coconut would have outranked apple on my list.
I love coconut pie. I have eaten it for breakfast before. I ate a whole one by myself once and I am not ashamed to admit it.
Did I mention I love coconut pie?
I demand a recount from whoever took this vote. They must have been hacked by the Russians or stuffed the ballot box. Maybe they misunderstood the question and answered sugar or cream when they meant coconut.
Coconut should be the number one pie in America.
I think we should put it to a national referendum. That is, of course, as American as apple ... make that coconut pie.
• Jason Deal is a staff writer for The Blackshear Times. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.