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Pie is my favorite dessert… there’s coconut cream, Key Lime, pecan, Dutch apple, Door County cherry, chocolate, lemon with mile-high meringue, banana cream,  mincemeat sour cream, pumpkin…and the list goes on.

Pie became the iconic American dessert in the 1940s. Research by Crisco and the American Pie Council reveals that when asked what dessert Americans would prefer a friend or family member bring to their house for a holiday dinner, pie was the winner, coming ahead of cake and cookies.

I was thrilled to learn there’s a National Pie Day, which for 2015 is on January 23. To celebrate this delectable sweet dessert, here are a few etiquette tips for how to eat pie with proper table manners. And if you’re counting calories, I’ve heard that calories from pie on National Pie Day don’t count!

  1. If the dessert silverware (a fork and spoon, or possibly just a fork) is placed above the dessert plate, bring both utensils to the lower place setting. Place the fork to the left of the plate and the spoon to the right.
  2. Use the fork only if the pie is served without ice cream.
  3. Use both the fork and spoon if the pie is served ala mode (topped with ice cream).  Place the fork in your left hand, tines down to secure the pie on the plate. Then with the spoon in the right hand, eat both the pie and ice cream. (If you are left handed, just reverse the process.)
  4. When finished, place both utensils in the 10:20 “I am finished” position on the dessert plate. (Visualize the plate as the face of a clock). The bowl of the spoon and the tines of the fork should be placed face up if you ate the rest of your meal in the American style. If you ate the rest of your meal in the Continental Style of dining, then place your dessert silverware in the Continental Style for finished position. The bowl of the spoon and tines of the fork are placed face down in the 10:20 position. Even if you only used one utensil, place both utensils in the “I am finished” position.

Now, let’s serve the coffee…and have some pie!