Talk:Apple pie

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject Food and drink / Desserts (Rated Start-class, High-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Food and drink, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of food and drink related articles on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
Start-Class article Start  This article has been rated as Start-Class on the project's quality scale.
Checklist icon
 High  This article has been rated as High-importance on the project's importance scale.


Apples from seeds?[edit]

"Apple pie in American culture

In the English colonies the apple pie had to wait for carefully planted pips, brought in barrels across the Atlantic, to become fruit-bearing apple trees, to be selected for their cooking qualities, as apples do not come from seeds" "As apples do not come from seeds?" Was that sarcasm? lol 20:35, 22 July 2007 (UTC)guy2759

nope.. apples of today are not planted from seeds. they use samplings of the apple they want to grow and then graft (wikipedia has an article on grafting) that sample onto a young tree.. this produces a perfect clone of the spliced on sample thus maintaining the properties on that apple :) thats why all apples of a certin variety always tasts the same and never evelves any new properties :)

i know its sounds weird, but thats the way it is :) cant quote any perticuar source though, but someone who can should add it to the article —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:17, 22 June 2008 (UTC)

The picture has changed[edit]

The picture as currently shown isn't a pie, it's cheesecake. :)

I don't know how to fix that; could we have the old picture back? Not that I don't like the new one--but it doesn't illustrate the topic. --Minority Report 21:33, 20 Nov 2004 (UTC)

I still think my idea of replacing it with a pic of Alyson Hannigan is best :-) .... Icundell 21:52, 20 Nov 2004 (UTC)

(all I see is, which is some sort of soft porn... O_o, whilst the image itself (NOT the thumbnail) is back to normal thanks to Norm... so, is it just my browser-cache or what?) - this seems to have been resolved. someone care to explain to me, how the thumbnail system works?

It's you browser cache. Refresh the page and it should be ok. Theresa Knott (Tart, knees hot) 08:47, 21 Nov 2004 (UTC)

I refreshed my browser cache and the purty ladies went away. Um, I change my mind. Can I have them back? --Minority Report 02:35, 23 Nov 2004 (UTC)

The price of sugar[edit]

"Cane sugar imported from Egypt was not widely available in 14th century England (costing the equivalent of US$100 per kilo)."

Oh come on! I can buy that possibly sugar beet production wasn't common in the middle ages. I can buy that possibly cane sugar had to be imported to Western Europe from Egypt. What I find difficult to swallow is that it's possible to come up with a fourteenth century exchange rate for a currency that hadn't been invented yet! Could somebody explain this? --Minority Report 20:06, 21 Nov 2004 (UTC)

[1] (and that sort of caluclation isn't all that difficult). Icundell 22:22, 21 Nov 2004 (UTC)
I've added the cite to the page (and apparently beet sugar wasn't discovered until 1784) Sugar beet Icundell
Looking at it again, if anything that estimate is conservative. Two shillings per pound is a staggering price for the 14th Century. Icundell

I still don't see any justification for calculating the cost of a product in a non-existing currency. What value would a dollar, the currency of a non-existent nation, have had in 1400? What President's face would have been on it? By all means find the price in shillings pertaining at the time, but to claim that it is possible to set a dollar spot price for 1400 sugar is like pretending that the builders of the Acropolis were paid in pounds sterling. --Minority Report 23:01, 21 Nov 2004 (UTC)

I've just realised why you are getting confused. Hang on while I tweat the page. Icundell
This sort of analysis is done all the time by historians and, especially, economic historians (I have done similar work myself). It is the only way in which meaningful comparison can be made between eras. It is absolutely legitimate and I have no reason to believe the cite is anything other than credible. It is adjusting for inflation not exchange rate. Then today's rate is used to give a $ price, the dollar being the pricing unit for most commodities. Icundell

There were no Europeans in America at the time. You wave your hands and mention inflation, but that is something that happens at differential rates within a society. Since there was no European-American society in 1400 and no US dollar there can have been no dollar inflation. It is thus impossible to adjust the current dollar back for inflation. Now these people whom you describe as "economic historians" may be accustomed to performing such calculations, but if they do so presumably they are able to provide you with a convincing justification other than that they've done it "all the time." Perhaps you'd like to summarise. Since the US Civil War had not been fought in 1400, would payment in Confederate dollars have been acceptable? --Minority Report 23:27, 21 Nov 2004 (UTC)

To take your last point first, we are expressing the price in today's terms, so of course Confederate Dollars are not acceptable. However it would be quite straightforward to express a Civil War confederate dollar price in terms of today's US Dollar.
Second, we are not adjusting the current dollar back. We (or rather SKIL) are adjusting the historical price forward. Dollar inflation is irrelevant. English inflation is the issue - dollars are just a way of expressing the result.
We know that in 1319 sugar cost two shillings per pound. Nominally that is 10pence (5p=1 shilling) - roughly 18c. There are 2.2 pounds to a kilo, so that's about 39.6c per kilo - and there you have it, a 1319 price expressed in dollars (or rather cents) AND in a weight measure that did not exist then either. Rocket science it ain't.
To get the value, rather than just the price, you then have to research what the rate of inflation has been over the years. There are detailed records going back at least to the 1500s in the UK (because there were wars and wars have to be paid for) and scads of anecdotal evidence (inflation data for the US has been compiled from 1665 that I know of). Good old fashioned donkey work is all that is needed. You would have to ask SKIL about their detailed methodology, but I see nothing on their site to undermine confidence in their research.
SKIL's US$100/ per kilo is around £24.50 per pound. The reason this is worth doing is because I can buy 1kilo of sugar in my local Tesco for 68 pence - about $1. So sugar was 100x more expensive in 1319 than it is today.
If you want a decent primer on the strengths and limitations of historical price data I'd recommend Butlin & Dodgson's An Histircal Geography of England & Wales. It's 1978, but you can still get it on Amazon UK and it is discussive and non-technical. Icundell 00:46, 22 Nov 2004 (UTC)

This seems unnecessarily strained to me. Instead of expressing the cost of sugar in imaginary currency like inflation-adjusted 1319AD US (Federal) dollars, surely it would be easier and more understandable to express the cost of sugar in 1319 relative to, say, the cost of a loaf of 1319 bread in 1319 currency. The very fact that sugar does not now cost anything like $100 per pound should I think give anyone cause to reflect on the gross inaccuracies that your alternative approach is likely to induce--however fashionable it may be. If the cost of sugar can vary wildly over the years, so can the relative costs of the necessities of life. A gross headline inflation rate is usually valid in the short term because such transitions generally take place over decades rather than months. If someone tells me that a pounds of sugar would have cost me $100 in 1319, it tells me nothing unless I know how much it would have cost me to do the kinds of things that 1319 Europeans generally did, and the economic conditions under which they lived--whether they generally grew their own food, how much they needed money and how much they relied on barter, and so on. You can't reduce that to fictitious dollar amounts --Minority Report 12:16, 22 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Looking for hard data, I find a reference to a work called "The history of sugar", which lists contemporary prices (shillings and pence) for white sugar in England from 1259 to 1593 (Table 2 in link below).

During the fourteenth century it rose from about 1s to about 2s per pound. Expensive, but no more so than the imported spices and raisins that were called for in the recipe. It seems that sugar was neither rare nor prohibitively expensive in fourteenth century England. Honey was several times cheaper and undoubtedly would have been included in the recipe if the cook had thought it necessary to sweeten the dish. I have quite often eaten apple pie made without added sugar and can vouch for its tastiness. --Minority Report 13:31, 22 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Please get out of the habit of belittling the points I am making as 'fashionable' It does you no credit. Converting prices to real terms is accepted practice and an essential part of making meaningful comparisons. Fashion does not come into it. For instance, Dixon's has just stopped selling VCRs. When they started selling them they cost £800. In today's terms thats the equivalent of £3,000, according to the radio this morning (I haven't checked the data, but have no reason to doubt it).
Nobody is telling you that 2.2 pounds of sugar would have cost you $100 and there is no fictitious currency being used (it could just as easily be express in Yen). They are telling you it would have cost you the equivalent of $100 in today's terms. Of course full analysis will compare it with other goods, and wages - and that approach will teach us much about 14th century life (the data you post needs exactly the same: "Neither rare, nor prohibitively expensive" to whom?.
But what this analysis does, straight away, is tell us that sugar was 100x more expensive then than now. Everything else follows from this, because this is the data that makes sugar interesting - not least because it explains why empires came to be built on the back of the sugar trade. It was known as 'white gold'.
Apple tart anyone? Icundell 14:32, 22 Nov 2004 (UTC)

"Nobody is telling you that 2.2 pounds of sugar would have cost you $100 and there is no fictitious currency being used (it could just as easily be express in Yen). They are telling you it would have cost you the equivalent of $100 in today's terms." The crux is that there was no equivalent of the US dollar in the fourteenth century, whether Union or Confederate. Since the Civil War hadn't even been fought yet, the question of which of the two currencies to use for the comparison would have been impossible to answer, for a start. As for Yen, well I suppose it is possible that the Yen existed as a currency in foruteenth century, but that's a different question.

"Neither rare, nor prohibitively expensive" to whom?. To someone who could afford "gode Spycis" and "Safron", of course.

I'm not intentionally belittling anybody by recognising that comparisons expressed in non-existent currencies, though more reminiscent of fantasy roleplay than science, are fashionable; nevertheless I apologise for giving offence. This has nothing to do with the short-term comparison that you cite--there certainly is a good basis for an inflationary adjustment between 2004 and the late 1970s when Dixon's first stocked video recorders. But surely you must admit that seven centuries is something of a leap. --Minority Report 15:19, 22 Nov 2004 (UTC)

When it was created, the US dollar was defined as 24.06g of pure silver. For most of its history, an English shilling was 1/20 of a troy pound of sterling silver (hence the name pound sterling for the British pound), or 18.66g. So, two silver shillings equal 1.55 silver US dollars of 1792. Because I am comparing coins 300 years apart, it would be more appropriate to find out how much a pound of sugar cost in England in 1792, to get an inflation adjustment from the 1400s to 1792, then do the transfer to silver dollars. Then you can use US inflation estimates to get a present value. More simply, though two shillings per pound means that sugar was worth 1/10th of its weight in silver. You can also go from there.
Since we are interested in purchasing power parity here, you could research what the weekly wage of a labourer was at the time (probably quoted in pennies a week, this being England), and get an estimate of the value of sugar in that way.
This stuff is not as meaningless as you make it sound, MR. — Miguel 00:23, 2004 Nov 23 (UTC)

I think you came pretty close when you suggested researching "what the weekly wage of a labourer was at the time." You might also like to find out what he spent his money on. The rest appears to be just pretty arithmetic with bits of precious metal. --Minority Report 02:43, 23 Nov 2004 (UTC)

I would add that what the recipe tells me straight away--from the absence of any artificial sweetener, including honey which could be harvested by the poorest peasant--is that the people of the fourteenth century had not the same sweet tooth as their Tudor descendants. --Minority Report 15:30, 22 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Sugar beet[edit]

Read the article sugar beet. People did not consider its use in sugar production until nearly the 19th century, and it was only in that century that production actually became commonplace (in France and Germany due to war). As far as I am aware, Sugar Beet sugar only took over in the British Isles during World War II. We would probably not use sugar beet in Ireland now but for the fact that its production became essential to the farmers here (and it does grow really well), and so it became part of Western agricultural protectionism.

I've no idea when sugar beet started to be used in the US, but I don't believe it's as common there as cane sugar (beet sugar is near universal in Ireland by contrast).

Mind you, friends from abroad have told me they like the distinctive taste of the beet sugar, and certainly I am quite accustomed to it. (Cane sugar is nice IMO, but I wouldn't feel the need to switch!)

zoney talk 15:48, 22 Nov 2004 (UTC)

This is very interesting, but I think it's emerging that the question of added sugar is tangential to the subject of apple pies. People in the middle ages probably didn't want to sweeten an apple pie because it was already sweet enough for them. To speculate that early apple pie recipes contained no sugar because sugar was far too expensive (which it wasn't) or rare (which it wasn't) is not justified by the known facts. --Minority Report 16:27, 22 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Motherhood and apple pie[edit]

Point of information: The article states that the usual expression is "as American as motherhood and apple pie." A Google search returns 255 of these. "As American as mom and apple pie" returns 493. But "As American as apple pie" returns 33,700, so that would seem to be the most often-used version.

While I can't say I've never heard the saying 'motherhood and apple pie' I'll throw my two cents in... I'm most familiar with the term "as American as baseball and apple pie" - and to the point above, searching Google for that exact phrase returns 525 pages (6 Dec, 2006). —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 16:20, 6 December 2006 (UTC).

I would say the key part of the expression is "motherhood and apple pie" and that it means something like "back to basics" as icons of home and childhood. So when someone says "As American as motherhood and apple pie" (or the more common "As American as apple pie"), they're not claiming either motherhood or apple pie to be particularly American; rather, they are saying that the importance of home and family is a key American concept; that home and family are the basic social unit; and that whatever they are promoting that is like "motherhood and apple pie" should be regarded as a basic need -- a safe idea.

In that sense, the expression could be used by many countries, except it wouldn't fit, say, Britain, where the family unit is not seen as the basis social unit in quite the same way, in my opinion. For example, despite "An Englishman's home is his castle," I would say the English don't see the family as the basic social unit in the same strong way that Americans do. This is arguable, but that is my sense. There is much more state interference in family life in England, and in the life of the individual. A good case in point was the jailing of the farmer, Tony Martin, for murder because he shot and killed a teenage intruder who was inside the farmer's home in the middle of the night -- even though both sides accepted that the farmer had been tormented by these intruders for months. That would never happen in America. In America, if you enter someone's home at night with the intention of robbing or hurting them, and you end up dead, that's your own tough luck. I would say this is not because of what is elsewhere perceived as American "gun culture." I would say it's the other way round: that American "gun culture" in whole or in part stems from the "motherhood and apple pie" theme, viz, that nothing -- no individual and no government -- should be allowed to disturb the basic family unit.

I won't edit this into the article as I know there's a dispute going on and I don't want to make it worse, so I'm leaving this here instead in case anyone's interested. It would be interesting to find out who first used the "motherhood and apple pie" expression. Slim 19:55, Nov 22, 2004 (UTC)

Actually many US states are somewhat more intrusive than the UK. For instance a Utah woman with a history of drug abuse has been charged with murder because she refused a Caesarean Section and one of the twins she was expecting died. [2]. So much for Mom and apple pie.

But this is off topic so I won't take this any further here. --Minority Report 20:51, 22 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Minority Report, I don't doubt that some states may be more intrusive than the UK in certain instances (though I don't think "many" is true). But regarding your example, I'm not sure it's a good one. The woman refused to seek medical help that might have saved her twins' lives, after another daughter she was observed punching in a supermarket was taken into care. As the woman had a history of mental illness, it's likely she'd have been required in the UK to have a Cesarean against her will under the Mental Health Act, not just charged after the fact for failing to do it. Slim 00:44, Nov 23, 2004 (UTC)
You do realise that she was charged with murder? But this is not the place to discuss. Feel free to continue on my talk page. --Minority Report 01:02, 23 Nov 2004 (UTC)

English people don't think of the family as the basic unit? Whatever next! What on earth does Tony Martin have to do with a sense of the family? He was a nutter who lived on his own. We don't believe that taking the law into your own hands and shooting burglars is part of "family life", you're right, although in fact, Ms Virgin, might note that Tony Blair has recently announced that there will be measures to allow the forceful defence of the home, which many had urged.Dr Zen 04:00, 27 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Legal experts have quite rightly pointed out that the right already exists--even to the protection of property. The key modern case in this is Hussey - (1924) 18 Cr App Rep 160. Hussey had a dispute with his landlady. His landlady and some others tried to break through the door in an attempt to evict him. Hussey fired his gun through the door, wounding one or more of them. It was held that he had a legal right to use force to defend his property and no duty of retreat. --Tony Sidaway|Talk 11:28, 27 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Quite. The issue in Martin's case was that he sat up all night waiting for the burglars and then shot one in the back as he was running away. He could not argue that he was defending his property in that instance. Dr Zen 23:44, 27 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Why do Americans have the impression that they're the best at everything? FAMILY ISN'T A BASIC SOCIAL UNIT? What on earth are you talking about? However, I do believe that this paragraph, like many others on this page, (like 'The funniest page on Wikipedia', where I have attacked the Americans strongly. Hurrah.) has rather gone off topic. Take your rants about America, good men of Britain, to places elsewhere. Leave the Yanks to their Apple pie and their baseball. But believe me, when I leave, I'm taking motherhood with me. NIN 13:36, 22 July 2007 (UTC)

As easy as Apple pie[edit]

Isn't this term common? "As easy as apple pie" is an phrase which I think could be mentioned here. Anyone has any ideas why there's no mention of that phrase? or why or how apple pies are suppposedly easy? tx--Idleguy 18:12, July 23, 2005 (UTC)

I've heard 'easy as pie', although not any specific type of pie. Wisco 02:50, 25 December 2005 (UTC)
Apple pies are fairly easy to make, but I believe "easy as pie" without further specification is much more common. --SodiumBenzoate 05:38, 5 July 2007 (UTC)

Apple pie and grammar[edit]

I'd just like to point out that under the Apple pie and cheese section, the line "The sharpness of the cheese combined with the tartness of the apple." is not a complete sentence. I'd fix it myself but I'm unsure what it is referring to and I currently do not have the time. Zhatt 22:41, 11 October 2005 (UTC)

It's a complete sentence if "combined" is read as a verb in the past tense. Though admittedly the sentence doesn't say what the combination does or why it is appealing.

Apple Pie À La Mode ?[edit]

Anyone wonder what does that phrase actually referrs to? As being the title of one of Destiny's Child songs, don't you think its worthy the mention? Or not?

And what about American Pie, the pie in the movie is obviously an Apple Pie! hehe

Omernos 00:16, 10 May 2006 (UTC)

A la mode means something like 'in the style...' Proper French usage would have some subsequent adjective such as 'francaise' or whatever, to indicate in what style.

in American usage, pie a la mode usually means it's served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top. Schoop 19:12, 19 September 2007 (UTC)

Re picture with US flag/American cultural symbols[edit]

question of flag etiquette. Some people would disagree with the use of the flag in the picture. The flag is not a place mat.

"an apple a day keeps the doctor away"[edit]

I encourage the deletion of the following from the article:

   "The Random House Dictionary of Popular Proverbs and Sayings (edited by G.Y. Titelman, 1996),       traces the origins of the proverb to a Welsh version of 1866 or earlier:
   Ate and apfel afore gwain to bed
   Makes the doctor beg his bread. "

Reasons to delete it: 1) not actually a proverb about apple pie 2) the proverb is surely from earlier than 1866, since "an apple a day keeps the doctor away" appears in Benjamin Franklin's Poor Richard's Almanac --Fagles 01:45, 5 September 2006 (UTC)

Of course it was written before 1866, you twit! It's in Middle English, which would make it written between about 1100 - 1500. So, obviously not an American proverb, because around 1100 the Americans were hunting Bison. NIN 12:49, 22 July 2007 (UTC)


Someone is going to have to update that. When I checked the page out there was one sentance that wasn't suitable for the article.-- 02:20, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

Done.--VirtualDelight 16:14, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

As American As...[edit]

I reverted the end of the sentence which described this phrase as metaphorical - otherwise the sentence doesn't make sense. If there's any basis for thinking that apple pies are specifically american (although this seems highly unlikely) then put it back.

It also has a self-deprecating meaning, as in 'there's nothing new under the sun'. Hakluyt bean (talk) 22:43, 13 September 2008 (UTC)

"Apple pie is usually made out of apples" photo caption[edit]

Duh? Not that's it's wrong or anything, but do we really need people slapping their foreheads everytime they visit this page? Stan weller 06:50, 17 May 2007 (UTC)

Done. This was added here by a, well, not all that helpful editor. VirtualDelight 09:16, 17 May 2007 (UTC)


Is apple pie healthy?-- 15:21, 24 June 2007 (UTC)

It can be, if there is little or no added sugar. -- 02:57, 3 July 2007 (UTC)

No food is healthy or unhealthy, as long as you eat it in moderation. Another lesson from NIN 23:34, 18 October 2007 (UTC)

No Lock Button?[edit]

It seems to me that users without a registered account, and come users with a new account cannot edit Apple Pie, but there is no lock, and how are they suppose to know that they can't edit the page anyway, is there something wrong with this page?

The page is semi-protected due to consistent vandalism. I have added the lock. G.A.S 12:17, 12 June 2008 (UTC)


In Wisconsin[and possibly elsewhere to some extent, though I personally haven't seen it anywhere else], apple pie is also the name of an extremely popular schnapps kinda drink, made from everclear or sometimes vodka, apple juice and boiled cinnamon sticks. I'd venture to say it's definitely more common [in the 15-25 age group especially] to hear somebody mention "apple pie" and be talking about a drink rather than a dessert. Would this be noteworthy enough to add on wikipedia? I can't find any sources except a crapton of recipes on google (talk) 09:20, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

It'd need independent sources, and then the issue would be whether it should have its own article, e.g., Apple pie (drink). —C.Fred (talk) 02:55, 28 December 2009
I know for a fact that Apple Pie (and various other names) is also a drink. I make a variant, along with several other folks in Georgia and neighboring states. This drink is very, very popular with the convention-going crowd, owing to the fact that it is made by the gallon, has a very smooth and mellow flavor, and is potent enough that a mild buzz can be obtained after only one to two cups for most folks. -Anonymous by choice — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:31, 26 November 2013 (UTC)

Served with Cheddar Cheese?[edit]

Apple pie is sometimes served with cheddar cheese, but don't see it mentioned in the article. Not sure what the origin of this is...New England? European? British?

CMcCrell (talk) 15:33, 15 July 2010 (UTC)

Canadian. I changed the page to reflect this.

Dutch apple pie[edit]

Raisins are indeed common in Dutch pie, as is a dash of rum. Many recipes (including those published on ready made apple pie crust mix) call for about half a pound (if not more, I typically use nearly twice that) of raisins soaked in rum to be added to the filling.

Of course the actual recipe used is different for each person cooking it. Another common variation is adding some vanilla or vanilla flavoured sugar. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:14, 4 October 2010 (UTC)

The last sentence in this section (and its citation) is questionable. I know personally in my part of the US (Great Plains), the style of pie mentioned in this section (Dutch) is still referred to as Dutch. The style with a streusel topping is referred to as "French." The cited source also seems like recipe repository/blog, which is an opinion-editorial source and not as authoritative as a better source (i.e. encyclopedia, older print recipe books, etc.) Trusting a source like this and citing it is hearsay at best. (talk) 13:04, 12 October 2013 (UTC)

Apple pie#French style[edit]

I'm having trouble finding reliable sources that agree with the text in this newly added section:

  • More sources say that "French Apple Pie" has a top crust. Here are some examples [3], [4], [5]
  • One source says that a "French apple pie" is the same as a "Pennsylvania Dutch apple pie" [6]

I think the new section needs to be rewritten to reflect sources or removed. JoeSperrazza (talk) 01:58, 5 April 2011 (UTC)

If there's no "standard French style" and/or there's nothing that the French do that's significantly different than anyone else then I think it can be safely removed. SQGibbon (talk) 15:08, 5 April 2011 (UTC)
I agree. I'll wait a bit for the editor who added that section to weigh in. JoeSperrazza (talk) 15:24, 5 April 2011 (UTC)


The history part is a bit short. In case anyone wants to expand it.... — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2601:8:B580:80B:249D:229A:6424:5718 (talk) 13:08, 6 December 2013 (UTC)

Apple Marketing Board of New York?[edit]

Does/did this thing exist, outside of Wikipedia or its spawn? As of today, New York seems to be served by the New York Apple Association, which doesn't mention a predecessor. Vermont and Connecticut have "Marketing Boards", but that seems about it.

Dubious indeed. InedibleHulk (talk) 17:12, November 22, 2014 (UTC)