“I like pie”

Urban dictionary says that this is a phrase used to politely decline to engage in discussion, with the implication that the original speaker is deliberately trying to upset or post flamebait. Perhaps I will have to do a future post on flamebait but as this political season heats up with all of its rhetoric and smear ads, I prefer the idea of eating more pie.

Summer Tomato Pie

I don’t mind the statement if it is truly used to ricochet the flamers. But the truth is that in our home, “I like pie” is an overused comment from the mouth of my 9 year old. It’s annoying and a method not to divert a flame but to divert a discussion. It causes me to wonder if there isn’t a bit too much discussion diversion going on right now. Hmmm, didn’t much like Bill McKibben’s political article in Rolling Stone? Think I’ll go eat pie or look up another pie recipe on internet. Illegal immigration? Pie. Health care benefits for the mentally ill? Pie.

Let’s flip this notion. What if we start from pie? That common grounding around a table, sweet or savory, face to face. What if we use pie as the reason to bring differing opinions together and all begin a discussion with the agreement that we like pie? I see a whole new brand of civil discourse erupting, “the pie talks”.

Tomato season continues and the fat, juicy heirlooms are rolling from the vines. Coworkers drop by with bulging bags of homegrown and my CSA is also sporting a good variety. I don’t think there is a way that I don’t like to eat them; raw, in salsa, roasted with garlic, stuffed and baked, blended with cashews into soup, made into sauce, ahhhh.

I love this dish because it can be served directly from the oven or after it’s cooled for an outdoor al fresco lunch or dinner. Because it is so simple to assemble, the variations and experimentations are endless.

Tomato Pie
Yields: One 9 or 10 inch pie
Adapted from David Lebovitz

For those of you like me who might have dough “issues”, you can use a ready made crust and then decide to either put it into a tart ring or mold it free-style. As you will see, I threw it into a regular pie plate.

Ingredients

  • One unbaked pie dough
  • Dijon or whole-grain mustard
  • 2-3 large ripe tomatoes
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 Tbs chopped fresh herbs, such as thyme, chives, chervil, or parsley
  • 8 oz goat cheese, sliced into rounds (optional)

Roll your dough out large enough so that it will cover the bottom of the pan and go up the sides. If making a freestyle variety, simply transfer the dough to a prepared baking sheet. Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Spread an even layer of mustard over the bottom of the tart dough and let it sit a few minutes to dry out.

Slice the tomatoes and arrange them over the mustard in a single, even layer. Drizzle the olive oil over the top. Sprinkle with some chopped fresh herbs, then arrange the slices of goat cheese on top. Add some more fresh herbs. (David suggests drizzling with honey here which I have omitted).

Bake the pie for 30 minutes or until the dough is cooked, the tomatoes are tender, and the cheese is slightly browned. Depending on your oven, if the cheese doesn’t brown as much as you’d like, pass it under the broiler until it’s just right. This recipe would also make fantastic appetizers if you made tiny individual pies.

Now invite some friends and some others that you don’t know as well and have an agenda to discuss an important topic. List the ground rules: No flamebait. And finish with a list of the common ground and an better empathetic understanding of where it is uncommon. I like pie.

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115 Comments

  1. I love the idea of “pie talks” as well as the recipe you shared. Both sound like great ideas!

    Reply
  2. you must have ESP- i am harvesting so many tomatoes right now, and need ideas for those. this looks delicious

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  3. I LOVE pie!! This recipe sounds divine. Can’t wait for the tomatoes in our garden to ripen!!

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  4. Whoa – that looks SO good Tammy! I’m big on anything I can stuff into a rustic home made pie shell… I hadn’t thought of this yet, but I guarantee it will be on my table soon : )

    I never knew that about the phrase “I like pie”. Now I’m probably going to wear it out, lol. Flamebaiting is one thing I absolutely detest about the internet… I just don’t see the point and I worry that it’s an reflection of our dwindling capacity for critical thinking and true communication.

    I always think of the movie True Romance when Alabama Whirley asks Clarence “Do you like pie”?

    That’s a favorite movie around my house…

    Reply
  5. Renee

     /  July 29, 2012

    This looks delicious! Can’t wait to try it when my tomatoes ripen! I also love the idea of using pie as a starting point for a discussion. Thanks, Tammy.

    Reply
  6. That looks delicious! We make a variation with swiss, parm, and a lot of basil and scallions– can’t wait until I have enough tomatoes on hand to make it.

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  7. Yummy! I’d love to come over to discuss deep thoughts over deep dish pie!

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  8. Yummmmmm. You’ve given me a great idea for dinner!

    Reply
  9. Tammy, you just inspired Monday’s dinner. Thanks!

    And I love your approach for using pie as a means to finding common ground.

    Reply
  10. Sally Mom

     /  July 29, 2012

    Oh Yummmmm! You just solved a problem for a oyster potluck this afternoon and me going to the Farmers Mkt. in Olympia right now. Thanks Tammy. Wish you were all here to enjoy your inspiration with me!

    Reply
  11. Lisa H

     /  July 29, 2012

    Wow, that looks so yummy! I never thought of mustard as a base, we’ll definitely give it a try. We like to use pesto (tomato, basil, or artichoke), as it is not as “saucy” as the traditional base. I also like how you use a pie dish. That could solve our problem of only cooking one pie at a time on our stone!

    Reply
  12. I don’t like pie. I love pie. I would glad swap pie eating for argumentative trolling discussion. Any time.

    Heirloom tomatoes sound lovely. I can’t remember the last time I ate a fresh tomato. They completely disappear over winter (it’s winter down here) and the imported kind are tasteless and very expensive.

    I love how pies can be eaten hot or cold and are very portable. Perfect picnic food.

    Reply
    • We have much in common! Don’t give in to the tasteless imports. The others are so worth waiting for!

      Reply
  13. I think about this–how do we get back to actually having informed discussions about controversial issues? the common language of food, cooking and sharing, does seem like a good place.
    tomato time is here, and it is glorious!

    Reply
  14. I never knew the phrase “I like pie” and why it is used. Now I do! And I love your version of how to use it. You are such a good thinker, Tammy, and writer . . and cook! I am sharing this recipe with my oldest daughter, who was just here and LOVES to cook and try new things. She teaches me!

    Reply
  15. Alicia

     /  July 29, 2012

    I’ve never wanted to eat a picture so badly in my life!

    Reply
  16. Thanks for enlightening me on the “I like pie” phrase. Time for me to try it out…

    Reply
  17. Another great post Tammy. This tomato pie is undeniably good…neither pretentious or humble.

    Reply
  18. I love the look of this tomato pie. It just looks gorgeous. I think the flavours of the tomatoes and dijon and goat’s cheese would be wonderful xx

    Reply
    • They are wonderful but you can mix it up in many ways and still have a great outcome.

      Reply
  19. Wow. Wow, wow, wow. Beautiful pie.

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  20. I think I like pie as well after reading this recipe :)

    Reply
  21. This tomato pie recipe will definite be made in my kitchen :) It looks simple and delicious :)

    Reply
  22. Umm Pizza Pizza…looks and sounds delicious…It’s breakfast time here, and as I cooked Sausage and Shells last night…I probably wont be baking a pie today…but, I’m certainly going to have to try this one soon…reminds me of Chicago Style Pizza…which I love better than any other kind of pizza…Except for one…and that’s the “Next Pizza”

    Reply
    • This is so versatile that you can easily throw other leftovers into it depending upon what is on hand.

      Reply
  23. Fantastic idea, coupled with a very good-looking pie recipe…I love this post! Thank you, Tammy!

    Reply
  24. I made a similar tomato pie for dinner on the night this post arrived in my inbox. We have used goat cheese but this time used cheese on hand – fontina, parmesan – and it still tasted great. But I had a thought as I made it that blue cheese would also be a good match.

    Reply
  25. Mason

     /  July 30, 2012

    It has been a while since I made a tomato pie, and this one looks delicious! This might be on my menu this week.

    Reply
  26. Both the educaation on current slang (I had surely missed this one) and the delicious tomato pie recipe are much appreciated. Man, that pie looks good!

    Reply
    • Slang is funny, isn’t it Diane? I mean, you really do have to keep up with it. My kids do a pretty good job of informing me.

      Reply
  27. I got lots of tomatoes peeking through the vines and I can’t wait to try this recipe. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
  28. Wonderful post in all the ways.

    Reply
  29. You’re absolutely right: this country could do with more open discussion of the issues and less avoidance. The more we demons we confront, the more of them we come to terms with. And doing that over pie sounds like a great idea!

    Reply
  30. That Pie looks amazing!!!

    Reply
  31. That looks so good!

    Reply
  32. oh man that looks good…and I don’t even like tomatoes :)

    Come and add this delicious recipe to this week’s CSA Link party…http://inherchucks.com/2012/07/25/whats-in-the-box-36/. Looking forward to seeing you there!

    Reply
    • I’ll give it a shot. Let me know if it works.

      Reply
      • No link in the link party…but it worked last time. Go and click on the bottom of my post where it reads Click to view/add link. Once you are on the link up page, scroll down to the bottom and click the button that reads click to add link. It will then ask for your URL of the post, the name of the post and your email. Let me know if you need any help.

        Reply
  33. Who doesn’t love a tasty recipe from David? I love your adaption. What a wonderful & appetizing pie! Looks tremendously tasty!

    Reply
  34. Oh wow, I adore tomatoes! Thanks for sharing this, I have to try it out once our seasonal house cleaning is done :)

    Reply
  35. Sounds and looks delicious!

    Reply
  36. wow! this looks super delicious!
    thanks for sharing the recipe

    Reply
  37. A sure way to engage positive civil discourse, for sure – around pie. I grow weary of the over-zealousness in the political sphere, and the negativity that goes with it.

    Well-written and well-said, Tammy.

    Reply
    • I grow weary also but I do wish people would just have a good old discussion over pie.

      Reply
  38. I LOVE pie! But pies without meat I have not tried so much. Egg quiches, yes, but not pies. Thus, I am copying this recipe down very carefully, Tammy. It looks amazing. Thanks!

    Reply
    • You can change it up too Kate. Instead of mustard, you can try pesto. Add other veg. Blue cheese… etc..

      Reply
  39. I had not heard that expression before, but YOUR pie looks delicious!

    Reply
  40. Excellent! Philosophy PLUS a great recipe:) Do you mind if I reblog this for my readers? I’d love for them to follow your blog as it is definitely one of my faves.

    Reply
  41. ps: I would also make this with basil and mozzarella as a variation. Yummy-yum-yum.

    Reply
    • That would be excellent too. If you do that, I’m not sure I’d still use mustard as the base. Maybe pesto.

      Reply
  42. Well, I like pie, but not as a diversion. As something to eat. And this pie looks scrumptious! My tomatoes should be ripe soon. :)

    Reply
  43. Hey, I nominated you for the The Very Inspiring Blogger Award.

    Reply
  44. Made this tonight- flavor is awesome- I used herb crusted goat cheese on top! but I think my tomatoes were TOO ripe because the bottom of the pie was pretty soggy :( Have you had this happen to yours?

    Reply
  45. I’ve never heard of this way or meaning of I like pie before – fascinating !

    Reply
  46. The French serve a great salad with goats cheese on toast and they often pour over a little honey which really adds as a flavour enhancer. Another pie discussion!?

    Reply
  47. Reblogged this on Outside the Box and commented:
    Dear Reader:
    Thought I would share with you one of my favorite bloggers here on WordPress. I especially liked this post of hers about pie and “flamebaiting” which I think highlights another facet or two regarding our political (and religious and cultural) dialogue these days. I think you will enjoy it as much as I did. And if all else fails . . . buy some fruit at the farmer’s market and make pie!

    Reply
  48. Tammy, this pie really looks delicious! What a good way to use the ripening tomatoes in the garden. Too bad our nearest goat cheese is 45 miles away…

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  49. thank you for visiting and following my blog

    Reply
  50. Hello Tammy, thanks for another delicious looking pie. Our tomatoes are ripe and I will try your recipe. Definitely.

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    • I am hoping that our farmer will have some more tomatoes this week. We didn’t get many this far.

      Reply
  51. We haven’t gotten a lot of tomatoes yet either…I love the sound of this recipe. Thank you for sharing it, I cannot wait to try it! I have just enough tomatoes :)

    Reply
    • I hope you like it. I have another tomato tart on an older post that I like equally well.

      Reply
  52. Yum! I am making this tonight!

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  53. I love that your recipes are in season and so yummy sounding. I’m a big fan of goat cheese and yogurt (as you probably know :P ). This is definitely being served for supper tonight!

    Reply
  54. Danielle

     /  August 30, 2012

    Tammy, I’ve been meaning to tell you that I shared this blog and recipe about the Tomato Pie with my sister Pam, and it has gone a lot further than I ever imagined. Pam lives in upstate New York and is a cook/chef at Cornell University. When she read it, it sounded really yummy to her, though she knew her husband and daughter probably wouldn’t go for it. Those were exactly my thoughts when I read it as well. I shared it with my sister because I didn’t want such a great-sounded recipe to fall by the wayside. She’s a cook and she might actually make the recipe. What’s more, she has a garden and has many ripe tomatoes to use up.

    Right around the same time she read the recipe, Pam was training an intern student in her kitchen, and the student had to work on pizza receipes. Pam thought this would be a really good one because it’s unique. She figured the judges would really like it. The student wasn’t really sure about the mustard base, but Pam said she thought the flavors would really work well together. So the student made it for her grade and it was very well received. It was so well received and the head chef was so impressed that they asked Pam to put this recipe on her next line of food items as a vegetarian entry.

    My sister was really glad that I emailed her your blog. I’m really glad that you wrote the blog in the first place, and that Pam is now making this recipe as part of her food line for hundreds of students and faculty that come in to eat her food daily.

    Oh – and we (Pam and I) have also been using the “I like pie” statement with our families — especially to our daughters who ask too many questions. My sister even went as far to use this saying with her boss when he asked about her readiness for volunteering to do a big Alumni week session of cooking. He got the point as soon as she said it, and he backed off a bit. Apparantly he’s the kind of guy who’s always looking for a way to not discuss things, so she tried his own medicine on him.

    Missing you, Danielle

    Reply
    • What a FANTASTIC story. I am honored and so thankful that you shared both the recipe and the story back! This is what blogging is all about – sharing and creating abundance! Thanks so much Danielle.

      Reply
  55. Yeah! Hope you like it.

    Reply
  56. Thank you! Thank you!

    Reply
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