Pie & Baking Dishes

Oh my! Americans love their pie—pastry with fruit or savory filling actually has its roots in Ancient Greece and Egypt, and the pies we know today with both a top and bottom crust are rumored to have been brought to the Old World from the Romans during the 2nd century.
Nothing has influenced stateside pie making and baking more, however, than our English kith and kin. We can all agree that regardless of whereto idea of filling pastry with meat, fruit, custards, or vegetables originated, we are grateful that pies grace Thanksgiving tables, summer Fourth of July picnics, Sunday suppers, and more.

The vessels used to make the pies come in many forms. Vintage or new, glass, ceramic, tin, porcelain, and cast iron make the best baking dishes, but the type of vessel helps determine what type is best suited for which pie dish material, the color and texture of the crust, and importantly the overall presentation of the finished pie. Given pie recipes are often passed down from a grandparent’s kitchen, families are apt to argue over which recipe absolutely must be part of the traditional Thanksgiving feast, or which should be baked for Father’s Day. At the end of the day, pie is always a reason to celebrate.

So, how to choose in what to bake your pie? Yes, a glass pie plate is easy to clean, but it has little wow factor. A ceramic plate makes for oven-to-table presentation and artisans handcraft these dishes in a variety of colors and sizes to achieve different aesthetics. Farmhouse Pottery offers pie and baking dishes in a country white that has heirloom appeal and a quintessential New England appeal. They also offer several different styles—ruffled edges, undulating sides, and many different sizes. Cast iron is the preferred option for making chicken pot pies or other meat-filled recipes.

Filled with nostalgia, vintage pie and baking dishes often come with a decorated lid known as a pie keeper. These two-piece dishes have the advantage of being able to bake and serve straight from the oven, and then sit on the counter or in the refrigerator covered to keep them fresh.