Apple Pie - History of Apple Pie
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Apple pies or tarts have shown up, in one form or another, since the Middle Ages.
1381 - 14th century pies were very different from today's pie, as they didn't contain sugar and the pastry (coffins) generally were not meant to be eaten. The coffins were meant to be used as a container only. Sugar during the 14th century was available, but was very scarce and extremely expensive.
The following very early apple pie recipe comes by way of The Project Gutenberg EBook of The Forme of Cury, by Samuel Pegge. This cookbook was originally compiled about 1390 A.D. by the master cooks of King Richard II, presented afterwards to Queen Elizabeth, by Edward Lord Stafford. According to historians, this is one of the first records of the modern apple pie.
1545 - Sugar was more readily available in the 16th century and the pastry (coffins) were meant to be eaten.
A cookbook from the mid 16th century that also includes some account of domestic life, cookery and feasts in Tudor days, called A Proper newe Booke of Cokerye (declarynge what maner of meates be beste in season, for al times in the yere, and how they ought to be dressed, and serued at the table, bothe for fleshe dayes, and fyshe dayes), has a recipe for an apple pie. NOTE: The following spelling and wording are quoted directly from the book).
1590 - Robert Green (1558-1592), English dramatist and poet, he could think of no greater compliment in praise of a lovely lady, wrote the following in his prose called Arcadia: "They breath is like the steame of apple-pyes."
1620 - When the English colonists arrived in North America they found only crab apples. Crab apple trees are the only native apples to the United States. European settlers arrived and brought with them their English customs and favorite fruits. In colonial time apples were called winter banana or melt-in-the-mouth. To read about the History and Legends of Apples, click on the underlined.
1700s - Apple pudding and Marlborough pudding were very similar to apple pie, as they were also baked in a pastry crust. The only difference seems to be the addition of eggs, as both types were baked in a pastry lined pan covered with pastry (either a solid lid or a lattice-type lid).
1713 - The poem called Apple Pye, by William King (1663-1712), English poet appeared in the pamphlet called The Northern Atlantis (York Spy):
1759 - The Swedish parson, Dr. Israel Acrelius, author of the A History of New Sweden; or, The Settlements On The River Delaware (an extensive history of the Swedish congregations of New Sweden), writing home to Sweden in 1759 an account of the settlement of Delaware, said:
1796 - The 1796 cookbook called American Cookery, by Amelia Simmons had two recipes for apple pie and one recipe for marlborough pudding:
Stew and ftrain the apples, to every three pints, grate the peel of a frefh lemon, add cinnamon, mace, rofe-water and fugar to your tafte - and bake in pafte No. 3.
A Buttered Apple Pie - Pare, quarter and core tart apples, lay in pafte No.3, cover with the fame; bake half an hour, when drawn, gently raise the top cruft, add fugar, butter, cinnamon, mace, wine or rosf-water.
Marlborough Pudding - Take 12 fpoons of ftewed
apples, 12 of wine, 12 of fugar, 12 of melted buttter, and 12 of beaten eggs, a little
cream, fpice to your tafte; lay in pafte No. 3, in a deep difh; bake one hour and a
1890s - According to the historians of the Cambridge Hotel in
Washington County New York, Professor Charles Watson Townsend, dined regularly at the
Cambridge Hotel during the mid 1890's. He often ordered ice cream with his apple
pie. Mrs. Berry Hall, a diner seated next to him, asked what it was called. He said it
didnt have a name, and she promptly dubbed it Pie a la mode. Townsend liked
the name so much he asked for it each day by that name. When Townsend visited the famous
Delmonico Restaurant in New York City, he asked for pie a la mode. When the waiter
proclaimed he never heard of it, Townsend chastised him and the manager, and was quoted as
saying; "Do you mean
to tell me that so famous an eating place as Delmonico's has never heard of Pie a la Mode,
when the Hotel Cambridge, up in the village of Cambridge, NY serves it every day? Call the
manager at once, I demand as good serve here as I get in Cambridge." The
following day it became a regular at Delmonico and a resulting story in the New York Sun
(a reporter was listening to the whole conversation) made it a country favorite with the
publicity that ensued.