Erika Council of Southern Souffle dishes on her favorite pies.
The old adage “You’re just as sweet as pie,” has somewhat of a double meaning to me. When told this as child, it would warm me to my soul because literally there was nothing sweeter than a slice of Mama’s Dip’s pie. My Grandma Dip runs Mama Dip’s, a country style restaurant in the heart of Tarheel Country. She’s a fixture in the community, serving up southern comfort food for decades. You can get that southern style goodness through breakfast, lunch and dinner.
And perhaps a slice or two of pie. One sun-kissed summer afternoon many years a go, sitting in a corner booth as people walked by, she enjoyed her coffee and I my slice of pie.
“You’re just as sweet as pie,” she said to me with a gleam in her eye and nothing but kindness in her heart.
Even some 20 odd years later, I smile when I think of that memory and even more so when I sit down to savor a plate full of flaky pastry filled with fruit or custard. From a crust that flakes when severed by your fork to one that’s made up of sweet dough and coated with warm custard, you could say I have this infinite love for all things pie and pie crust.
Here are some of my favorites
Give me a warm slice with apples layered in the center creating a mountainous pile of cinnamon sugar-laced fruit snuggled between golden buttered pie crust. Perhaps with an upper crust woven with lattice strips if you’re fancy.
Or take me away Annie Mae
Anne Lou Stein of Goldsboro, North Carolina made the best coconut custard I’ve ever had. A can of sweetened condensed milk and shredded coconut goes a long way when baked in that piecrust. Supposedly the secret to Ms. Anne’s pie was she would soak the coconut in milk for hours before using.
“Oh My Oh My That Sweet Potato Pie”
Hands down my all-time favorite. It’s a soul food staple, which everyone’s Big Mama had the “best” recipe for. I developed this love on that summer afternoons, sitting in a corner booth, my grandma with her coffee and I with my slice of sweet potato pie.