Wigan, an English town west of Manchester, is known for its enthusiastic pie-eating, even hosting the annual World Pie Eating Championship. Small wonder, then, that Wiganers devised myriad ways to eat their pie, including one that requires no cutlery. Enter the pie barm, a meat pie sandwiched between a buttered roll.
The roll in question is known as a “barm cake,” which means it was leavened with barm (the foam at the top of any fermented beverage, usually beer). This ingenious manner of pie degustation ensures the fastest consumption of hot, meat-filled pastry, no utensils needed, because the bun protects hands from getting burnt. The pie sauces are absorbed in the barm cake, meaning a no-mess meal on the go. Really, it’s as easy as pie.