History of the Pie
It is believed that pies and pie making can be traced back for centuries to ancient civilisations. For example, the Ancient Egyptians used to eat a form of pastry that contained sweet things such as honey, fruit and nuts. This wasn’t, however, technically a pie as we know it and it is thought that it was the Ancient Greeks that really invented a pastry based pie.
The pies made by the Greeks were also taken up by the Romans who took the recipes back to Rome and used them to make puddings that usually contained savoury meat and fish fillings. It is thought that these puddings were actually more like pies than puddings as we know them.
Over the centuries pies have been a popular food all over the world although we generally tend to associate them with Britain as they are almost a traditional food here. In medieval times, for example, the court would eat pies with all kinds of standard and exotic fillings including swans, peacocks and other birds.
In many cases the pastry was basically used to simply hold together and cook the ingredients of the pie and might not be eaten. And, pies were often used as a spectacle to entertain the court rather than for consumption.
As the centuries moved on other kinds of pies such as shepherds and cottage pies became more popular as well and it became more common to eat sweet fruit based pies. The American settlers took many recipes with them from Europe and, of course, ended up creating many pie dishes of their own such as pumpkin pie.