The Good Husband was barbecuing. I wanted to end the evening with a flourish. Mouth puckering, I’ll have just a tiny slice more, Lemon meringue pie. For my gardening guru friend Dellis, the dessert evoked memories of her Mother’s pie. Even the Pyrex pie plate was similar to her Mom’s dish. The “cooked” meringue takes this pie to a new level. It does add an extra step but the texture and the “never weep” finish makes it more than worth the effort. You can also use this meringue recipe when making Flapper Pie (my original recipe to the right
LEMON MERINGUE PIE
MAKES ONE 9 INCH PIE; SERVES 8 TO 10
For the Filling:
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tbs cornstarch
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (3-4 lemons)
5 large egg yolks
2 generous tbs grated lemon zest
4 tbs. unsalted butter, cut into pieces
(your favorite pie crust – or use my recipe for the Butter Tarts it’s on the right)
Swiss Meringue for pies (to follow).
Preheat your oven and blind bake your favorite pie crust recipe until the edges show golden brown. Remove the weights and continue baking for 7 to 10 minutes more. Let cool.
To Make the Filling’
Sift sugar and cornstarch in a bowl. Stir in 2 cups water until mixture is smooth.
In a nonreactive saucepan over medium heat, combine the lemon juice, egg yolks, and a spritz of salt. Stir in the cornstarch mixture. Cook, stirring constantly with a whisk, until the mixture falls off in thick clumps – 2 to 3 minutes. It is important you cook the mixture so no only does the cornstarch thicken but the egg yolks cook. If you under-cook you will have a runny filling.
Remove from the heat; stir in the zest and butter and whisk until smooth. Pour into a bowl, and let cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally so a skin doesn’t form. Cover with plastic wrap until almost firm, about 1 hour. then fill your pre -baked pie shell.
Preheat the broiler. Spread the meringue over the pie so that it covers the filling and touches the crust all around. Broil just until golden brown on parts of the meringue, WATCHING CONSTANTLY. Serve at room temperature. Luscious, lovely Lemon Meringue Pie. Bon Appetit!
This recipe makes 4 cups. Heap it all on the pie. This meringue works well for piping shapes. Using the whisk attachment to beat egg whites in the final stage works best; warming the egg whites help dissolve the sugar, giving the meringue greater volume.
4 large egg whites; at room temperature
1 cup sugar and a pinch of cream of tartar
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract.
Fill a medium saucepan one-quarter full with water. Set the saucepan over medium heat and bring the water to a simmer.
Combine egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar in your electric mixer bowl; place over saucepan.
Whisk constantly until the sugar is dissolved and the whites are warm to the touch, 3 to 3 1/2 minutes. Test by rubbing mixture between your fingers to ensure no sugar remains.
Attach the bowl to the electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, and beat, starting on low speed and gradually increasing to high until stiff , glossy peaks form, about 10 minutes. Add the vanilla, and mix until combined. That’s it!