One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
In French cookery: a large, ornate cake or pastry dish designed to be the centrepiece of a table; (also) any dish forming the centrepiece of a meal. Also in extended use: an ostentatious or impressive display.
Early 19th century. From French pièce montée from pièce + montée, feminine of past participle of monter.
pièce montée/piːˌɛs mɒnˈteɪ/
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