Foie Gras vs. Pie

A call from my daughter coming home from college for the weekend. “Can we go out to dinner?…. Or can I help you make chicken pot pie?”

Pie, as you know I know, has the pull of the elemental, the essential, the eternal.

The Oxford English Dictionary traces the first use of the word “pie”  to 1303, observing that the word was well-known and popular by 1362.

“Pie…a word whose meaning has evolved in the course of many centuries and which varies to some extent according to the country or even to region….The derivation of the word may be from magpie, shortened to pie. The explanation offered in favour or this is that the magpie collects a variety of things, and that it was an essential feature of early pies that they contained a variety of ingredients…”

The New York Times ran an article today about lasting foods, foods that fall out of favor and then come back. The piece focuses on foie gras, primarily, and its variations. Tournedos Rossini (truffles, foie gras and madeira sauce.) Hamburgers that incorporate foie gras, beef and spam. But also classics like beef Wellington and lobster newburg.

Apparantly the outcry for these dishes is newly revived, if in fact it ever went away.

I love foie gras. One of my fondest restaurant memories is Au Pied de Cochon in Quebec, where we ate foie gras with every course.

But I would suggest that in terms of lasting fullfillment, a classic that sticks to your heart as well as your ribs, pot pie will never go away.

Chicken, turkey or beef, you choose

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Filed under Cooking, History, Jean Zimmerman

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