Growing up I have fond memories of my grandmother and her pies. As an adult, we moved into a house two doors up and across the street from Grandma and I cherished those late mornings when my chores were done and I walked through the door to see my 4’11” grandmother rolling out pie dough and filling it with amazing ingredients.
My children came to love Charlotte the Great for her pies, just as I did. Zac’s favorite was chocolate and Jake’s favorite, pumpkin. For me, it was her tart cherry pies with the sugar sprinkled generously on top!
My mother carries on the tradition of pie making. Her crust is flaky, buttery and a temptation for the taste buds. Her fillings are delicious representations of exotic places, down home memories and seasons.
Me? I’m still a generation that’s a work in progress on perfecting the art of pie making. These days I’m learning from Beth Howard.
Author and baker Beth M. Howard knows pies but she’s not your typical pie maker. Since taking up the rolling pin she’s made pies at California’s Malibu Kitchen for celebrities including Barbra Streisand (lemon meringue),Dick Van Dyke (strawberry rhubarb), and Steven Spielberg (coconut cream). She loaded 240 pies into an RV and drove them from Iowa to Newtown, CT. in December 2012–knowing full-well the healing power of pie. She currently calls the famous American Gothic house in Eldon, Iowa home and runs the hugely popular Pitchfork Pie Stand out of its parlor every summer.
Seeing as Beth M. Howard is far from your typical pie maker so understandably her new book is far from your typical cookbook.
With full-color photos throughout, Ms. American Pie: Buttery Good Pie Recipes and Bold Tales from the American Gothic House
[Race Point Publishing, April 2014, $28.00 US/$30.00 CAN] features 80 of Beth’s coveted pie recipes along with some of her own true tales of taking her pies from coast to gleaming coast and the lessons she learned along the way. Inside readers will find recipe after mouthwatering pie recipe in chapters such as:
- Pies to Question Authority
- Pies to Heal
- Pies to Seduce
- Pies to Keep an Open Mind
- Pies to Compete in the Iowa State Fair
In addition Beth shares her philosophy of pie ideology–pie builds confidence, pie builds community, pie connects people–and so on. She shares her pie principles including the irrefutable truth: if you can get past your fear of pie dough you can get past bigger, scarier fears. And she busts pie myths – turns out you don’t need to refrigerate your crust before rolling it and using your hands to mix the dough will not make it tough.
Readers will soon discover that MS. AMERICAN PIE is so much more than a cookbook, it’s a reminder that through it all there is happiness around every corner and if you’re looking for that extra nudge to move forward, that springboard to launch you to the next level – it’s always best to start with pie.
About the Author
Beth M. Howard baked pies for celebrities at California’s Malibu Kitchen before moving back home to rural Iowa. She currently lives in the American Gothic House, the backdrop of Grant Wood’s famous painting American Gothic, and she runs the hugely popular Pitchfork Pie Stand. She is the author of the highly-acclaimed memoir Making Piece: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and Pie. A veteran journalist, she has written for Real Simple, Natural Health, Shape, and Elle.
MS. AMERICAN PIE
Buttery Good Pie Recipes and Bold Tales from the American Gothic House
By Beth M. Howard
Race Point Publishing
$28.00 US / $30.00 CAN
Original Trade Hardcover
ALSO AVAILABLE AS EBOOK!