Centuries of Japanese craftsmanship reinvent the way we cook pies.

In Japan, businesses with centuries of craftsmanship behind them have been adapting their products in recent years to suit modern lifestyles and keep their craft alive. Japanese company Oigen Foundry, which specialises in Nambu cast iron ware, is one example, as their expertise in making iron teapots since 1852 has now seen them expand into the world of modern kitchen goods, covering things like pots, pans and now… the Apple Pie Cooker.

This specially made kitchen utensil has been crafted using Nambu cast iron techniques, a traditional craft originating from the Nambu domain, located in and around modern-day Morioka City in Iwate Prefecture. Centuries of metalwork techniques have essentially gone into the creation of this neat little cooker, and not only is it shaking up the iron world, it’s shaking up the cooking world too, as it allows you to make apple pies on a gas stovetop instead of in the oven. 

The idea for the gadget came from Chef Sasamori, who works at Italian restaurant Osteria Enoteca Da Sasino in Hirosaki City, Aomori Prefecture, an area famous for apples. Having used Oigen’s pots and pans in the kitchen before, Sasamori wanted to know what it would be like to make apple pies in cast iron, and after suggesting the idea to the company, the Apple Pie Cooker was born.

▼ The cooker makes up to two pies at a time.

Easily divided into two separate parts, the cooker is convenient to clean and features gorgeous design details, with not just the shape of the fruit moulded into the iron, but the stem and leaf detail as well.

▼ This allows you to make the most adorable apple pies!

According to Oigen, pie-making is easy, as all you have to do is pop a frozen pie sheet into the mould, place apple compote or even your favourite jam on top, and layer with a final sheet of pastry. Then close the lid, hook the two handles together with the attached clasp, and wait until your baked goods are ready.

▼ Each cooker comes with a recipe and instructions so you can make perfect pies every time.

Oigen suggests experimenting with a variety of fillings and ingredients like bread instead of pie sheets for different textures and flavours as well. The cookers retail for 9,350 yen (US$89.31) and can be purchased online or at the Brick cafe, where the pies made in the cooker will also be on the menu for diners to order.

The Apple Pie Cooker is a fun new way to cook pies, and a fun new way to appreciate the revered craftsmanship of Nambu iron specialists from Japan’s northern region. We’re definitely going to be adding one of these to our kitchen this winter, where it’ll be right at home with our stovetop sandwich press, a “god-item” for solo diners.

Featured image: Oigen
Insert images: Oigen (1, 2)

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