In a recent patriotic-and-Thanksgiving-themed lunchtime poll - brought to you by the Party of (D)eliciousness - one of the questions we posed was: what's your pie preference for the Turkey Day spread?
When a few folks declared their allegiance to the chess pie, many were confounded. What is this pie you speak of, and does it involve knights, pawns and bishops?
Chess pie is a particularly Southern creation - a rich custard-based pie with a filling made of eggs, butter and sugar. Some variations call for the addition of cornmeal, buttermilk or vinegar - and as the pie recipe migrated, as noted in our managing editor’s (semi) native Kentucky family recipe, dried fruits and nuts were added to the mix.
Along with the latter theory, one of the Southern Foodways Alliance's founders and celebrated Tennessee-based writer John Egerton wrote in his book, Southern Food: At Home, On the road, In history, that chess pie could have first been called "chest pie" because it kept well in the pie chest - a cupboard used to store, well, pies.
Whatever the theory, a chess pie by any other name still tastes as sweet.
Dr. Kinsman’s Chess Pie
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