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As American as apple pie: how apple pie became a symbol of American happiness


Source: That American Life on Yandex Zen

What can be considered a real American symbol? Empire State Building, Statue of Liberty or Cheeseburger? Probably, all of the above can be such, but besides it, you can safely add apple pie to this list, the author of the blog writes That American Life on Yandex.Zen.

Photo: Shutterstock

Over the years, it is considered a classic American dessert and has become so entrenched in local culture that even a catchy expression has appeared here: as American as apple pie - is as American as apple pie. And why exactly this dessert was lucky to become such a patriotic symbol, we will understand further.

America, unlike Europe and Asia, could not boast of a wealth of apple varieties - these fruits were not common here until settlers arrived in the territory of the modern USA. But they brought seeds and seedlings with them not to use apples for baking, but to produce cider.

And after almost two centuries, John Chapman, also known by the nickname Johnny Appleseed (Johnny Apple Seed) began to plant apple orchards throughout the Midwestern United States. It was thanks to him that apples gained such popularity in America and began to be used by residents of many states for making desserts.

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But apple pies became a truly patriotic product during the Second World War. Then, many soldiers answered in an interview with reporters that they were going to war "for mom and her apple pie (for mom and apple pie)." Thus, this dish went down in history, and also became a symbol of the homeland and domestic happiness for American soldiers.

Today, about 200 million apple pies are sold in stores annually, and this is not counting those served in restaurants or baked at home. Most Americans (27%) consider this cake to be their favorite; followed by a pecan pie (14%), pumpkin pie (12%) and lime pie (10%).

Traditional Apple Pie Recipe

Cooking time: about 1,5 hours - 30 minutes for preparation and 1 hour for baking. Output: six servings.

Ingredients for form 22, see.

For the dough:

  • 2,5 cups of flour (approximately 300 g);
  • 200 g frozen unsalted butter;
  • ¼ cup ice water;
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar;
  • 1 a teaspoon of salt.

For apple stuffing:

  • 8 large apples of solid green varieties (e.g. Granny Smith);
  • from ¾ to 1 cups of sugar to taste (it is better to take brown);
  • lemon peel and juice 1;
  • ½ to 1 teaspoon of cinnamon to taste;
  • ground nutmeg on the tip of a knife;
  • 2 tablespoons of flour.


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit (190 Celsius).
  2. Combine flour, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Using a grater, rub frozen butter there and rub with a dry mixture with your fingers. Add ice water and knead until the dough is rolled into a ball.
  3. Cut the resulting ball into two parts - 2/3 and 1/3, each wrap with cling film and put in the refrigerator for 30 minutes (longer).
  4. While the dough is cooling, peel the apples, cut them into slices and pour in lemon juice. Sprinkle with sugar, cinnamon and flour, add lemon zest and nutmeg. Gently and thoroughly mix the filling.
  5. Remove the prepared dough from the refrigerator and leave it on the table - it should warm slightly.
  6. Roll out 2/3 of the dough and put it into a deep greased form, with your fingers filling out the sides. Distribute the filling in the resulting “container” from the dough.
  7. Separately, roll out the rest of the dough, you can cut out drawings from it or cut strips and weave a mesh. Cover the pie with this piece and pinch the edges. Even if you don’t want to bother with the drawing, you need to make holes in the “cap”.
  8. Lubricate the surface of the product with egg yolk, you can lightly sprinkle with sugar.
  9. Bake until the dough turns red and the juice starts to boil slightly in the holes of the cake. It usually takes about an hour.
  10. Let cool slightly so that the filling acquires a pleasantly thick consistency.

The cake is perfect both in the warm form, for example, with ice cream or milk, and in the cold - with cocoa, coffee, tea and other favorite drinks.

Original column published on channel That American Life on Yandex.Zen

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