Lemon Meringue Pie
Well, dear Readers, we are now looking at the challenger in this battle of citruses - lemon meringue pie. This is a classic combination: heaps of torched meringue sitting on a jiggly lemon curd filling. Unlike our previous competitor, the blackberry lime curd meringue pie, there is no fruit buffer. No artistic swirling of meringue, or artful tucking of berries. No syrups used in the meringue, or gelatine in the curd. This is straight-up pie. The kind you see in movies in the diner pie display cases. The kind mom used to make with the supermarket lemon pudding packages. The kind where the lemon puckers your entire mouth and thousands of tiny bubbles in the meringue melt on your tongue. Where the previous pie was polished and tasteful, this pie is bad(bleep).
I'm not going to lie to you. The crust is exactly the same as the one used for the blackberry lime curd meringue pie. It's a single crust and blind baked. But just so that you believe me, here's a picture of of the unbaked crust being docked. (For the recipe, just check out the previous post. One day, I will have a "how-to" on pie crust making. What can I say. I make pies. Alot.)
The curd is made pretty much the same way at the lime curd. Only difference (besides using lemons and not limes), is that there is no gelatine or whipped cream folded into the curd. It may not be as light as the BLMP (blackberry lime meringue pie - I just can't keep writing it anymore!) but it has an undiluted tart lemony taste and it sets to a perfect jiggle.
(My apologies for the quality of the photo. It was late. My camera doesn't like taking pictures after dark. It rebels by making all the photos look like they have a sepia-quality to them. But sadly not in a good way...)
Straight up meringue. And lots of it.
Both meringues browning in the oven. The LMP (lemon meringue pie) browns much better than the BLMP.
The finished pie...
So, which was the winner? Well, it depends on who you ask. The judges were divided. Half felt that the BLMP (blackberry lime meringue pie) was the best they'd ever tasted. The other half thought that you just can't make the classic any better.
Me? I'll take the lemon meringue pie any day.
Mile High Lemon Meringue Pie
adapted from Martha Stewart
- Pate Brisee (Pie Dough) (see previous post for pie dough recipe and instructions)
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 1/3 cup cornstarch
- 1/3 cup sifted cake flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 5 large egg yolks, lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons lemon rind
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 7 large egg whites
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
Heat oven to 400 degrees. On a lightly floured surface, roll
out dough to a thickness of 1/8 inch, and line a 9-inch pie tin.
Crimp the edges. Chill until firm. In a small bowl, whisk
together egg yolk and cream to make a glaze. Dock the dough with a fork, brush the top edges with the glaze, and line with
parchment paper. Weight the shell with pie weights or dried beans, and
bake until the edges begin to brown, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove paper and
weights; continue baking until golden brown, 7 to 10 minutes more. Let
To make filling, combine cornstarch, cake flour, salt, and
sugar in a medium nonreactive saucepan over medium heat. Gradually add 2
cups cold water. Bring the mixture to a boil, whisking constantly,
about 4 minutes.
Remove the pan from heat. Temper egg yolks by beating a small
amount of hot mixture into the yolks before adding them to pan. Cook
over low heat for 5 minutes.
Remove the pan from heat, and whisk in the lemon juice and
rind. Add the butter one piece at a time. Pour the mixture into a large
bowl, and let cool.
Pour the filling into the cooled shell and refrigerate, covered with aluminum foil, until firm, about 1 hour.
To make the meringue, combine egg whites, sugar, and salt in a
heat-proof bowl. Set over a pan of simmering water; beat until warm and
sugar is dissolved. Remove bowl from heat; whip into stiff peaks.
Spread the meringue over pie so that it touches crust all
around. Broil in oven until brown, about 2 minutes.