I am a pie person. Anyone who has any level of regular interaction with me knows that I am a pie person. I make a lot of pies, I own as many pie plates as our Test Kitchen. I have a pie carrying case that is cooler than anything else I own. I’m known to show up anywhere from the office to a brewery with a pie in my hands. I spend what little time I’m not working on Cooking Light content creating pie content for my pet project pie blog (TGIPiedays.com). I adamantly refuse to bake my peoples anything other than a “birthday pie,” and I have very seriously considered ordering 5 of these shirts to wear every day of the week as my life uniform (I largely avoid human contact on the weekend–no need for a uniform).
Part of my being a pie person is that I am not a cake person. I am no hater, so it’s not like I hate cake. Cakes are kind of like microwaves and most of my ex-boyfriends… I don’t hate them, I just don’t have much use for them. I understand that not everyone can understand my pie-litical views—plenty of folks don’t take kindly to my cake hate speech and hashtags—and that’s fine, I get it. But I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about this, and as a pie person for the pie people, I believe my voice should be heard. Should anyone out there be wavering on the fence between pie and cake, I have constructed a list of eloquent and irrefutable examples of how pie completely trumps cake:
1. Pie is 3 letters, cake is 4. There is power in concision.
2. Pie can pull off savory. Cake cannot.
And no, that Pinterest thing where you make little meatloaves in a muffin tin and call it “meatloaf cupcakes with mashed potato frosting lol” doesn’t count. That’s weird, and you’re better than that. Get yourself an empanada.
3. Crust on pie is buttery and amazing. Crust on cake is gross.
4. Speaking of gross, frosting–it generally sucks.
5. Ice cream on top of cake makes you sugar-dizzy and nauseated. Ice cream on top of pie makes you wanna hug a stranger. #foodscience
6. Posers can bake a passable cake from a box. Posers can’t bake a passable pie. Pie is the “no posers allowed” zone of desserts. Pie keeps it real. Pie is fly; cake is fake.
7. Pie is dynamic. Cake is not nearly as dynamic.
You can can have flaky crusts or crumbly crumb crusts. You can have gooey fruit fillings or silky cream fillings or rich, dense custard fillings. You can have bright fresh berry toppings, or fluffy whipped toppings, or salty-sweet crumb toppings, or combinations of all the toppings! The possibilities for exploration and experimentation in pie are inspiring and wonderful. Example: I once made a lavender rice pudding pie topped with berries that legitimately changed my world for the better. I’ve never had a cake change my world for the better.
8. Nine out of ten cakes you ever eat will be too dry.
I can’t really imagine a scenario where your pie would be dry. You would have to try really hard to make a dry pie… unless you’re a poser [see # 6 above].
9. Chocolate cake doesn’t really taste like chocolate. Chocolate pie tastes the most like chocolate.
10. Miniature pies (i.e. hand pies) are awesome. Miniature cakes (i.e. cupcakes) are annoying and were developed as an excuse for psychos to coerce consumers into believing mo’ frosting is mo’ better. Don’t drink the water–mo’ frosting IS NOT mo’ better.
11. Don’t care how many layers are there, cake is shallow. It’s all about show– stacking tall, frosting spackled tight and smooth along its curves, glazes dripping hungrily for anyone who’ll look. That’s right, that cake–pretty as it is–is more hungry for you than you are for it. Pie, on the other hand, isn’t hustling for anyone’s approval. It can be kind of messy–imperfect edges, sometimes spills over a little, bubbly, juicy, doesn’t always cut clean. Sure, pie can also be graceful, elegant, and beautiful… but pie is never concerned with the attention of those who are are memorized by the noise of those seeking attention (*cough* cake). We could all take a note from pie’s wisdom and confidence.
12. You feed cake to children because: A.) it won’t choke them and B.) because their palates aren’t developed, and all they know is sugar=good. You feed pie to adults because they can chew their food properly and [hopefully] appreciate flavor.
13. Pot pie is awesome. Pot cake… sounds like a misdemeanor.
14. You eat pie because you want a real dessert (or breakfast/lunch/dinner). You eat cake because it happens to be there.
So there you have it. Because I am a woman of integrity, I will gracefully acknowledge that cake has one thing over pie, and that one thing is this. Enjoy.
Now Get to Making Some Pies: