Recipe: Lemon Meringue Pie
Our Easter was extremely quiet this year. There was no big family gathering as on past Easters. I am still not sure exactly how I feel about that; definitely mixed feelings on this. There were at least ten people missing from around the dinner table. Ha- as a matter of fact, herein lies part of the problem- we no longer HAVE a dinner table because we haven't the room for one anymore, our home is too small to accomodate the size table needed.
So, I guess I am feeling kind of sad about the whole thing.
Another part that I feel sad about was the dessert I made for the four of us that were here for dinner. I always offer two suggestions for Easter dessert and this year was no different- who wants lemon meringue pie and who wants angel food cake with cherry pie filling and whipped cream. I take a poll and make whichever one gets the most requests, and it is usually the angel food cake. This year, because there was only the four of us, I went ahead and made the lemon meringue pie. I hadn't made one since the late 1990's, at least not from scratch. Finances dictated that, this year, a homemade-not-from-a-box pie was on the menu.
I researched recipes (there are tons!) and just went with the one I have in my collection of pie recipes. I have used this recipe before and as far as I remembered it was always a success. It was this year as well, except for myself. I found it to be too sweet and not lemony enough. The rest of the household loved it and devoured it.
I am thinking the reason I didn't enjoy it is because, ever since I stopped drinking pop (soda for my American friends) EVERYTHING tastes way sweeter. I even don't eat as much chocolate (gasp!! I know, right?!?) as I used to.
I am sharing the recipe here. Maybe you will have better luck with it then I did... I also tried a different pastry recipe - why I did that I have no idea - but I liked it and will use it again.
Lemon Meringue Pie (makes 1 pie)
1 cup sugar
3 tbsp cornstarch
2 cups hot water
3 egg yolks
Juice of 2 lemons
1 tbsp margarine
1/4 tsp salt
1 baked, 9-inch pie shell (recipe follows)
3 egg whites at room temperature
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
6 tbsp sugar
Filling: In a medium sized pot, stir together the sugar and cornstarch. Stir in hot water and egg yolks. Place over medium heat and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil about 1 minute, then remove from heat.
Stir in lemon juice, margarine and salt. Cool.
Spoon filling into baked pie shell.
Beat together egg whites and cream of tartar until you have a stiff froth. Add sugar gradually while beating until stiff and sugar is dissolved. Pile onto filling, making sure to seal it to the pastry all around - there should be no filling showing at all.
Bake near top of 350 degree F oven about 10 to 15 minutes until browned.
Pastry ( yield: 6 to 8 shells)
(This is basically the same as my regular pastry recipe except it has brown sugar and baking powder added. My pastry turned out great and I will use this one again. It makes way more than you need for one pie shell and it freezes well. Now I have extra pastry for whenever I get the urge to bake more pies or tarts)
5 cups flour
3 tbsp brown sugar
2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1 lb lard, fairly cold
2 tbsp vinegar
Enough cold water to make 1 cup
Put flour, brown sugar, salt and baking powder into a large bowl.
Mix thoroughly. Cut in lard until the size of tiny peas.
Break egg into a 1 cup measuring cup and beat with a fork, Add vinegar. Pour in enough cold water to measure 1 cup. Pour a little at a time over flour mixture, tossing and stirring with a fork until all liquidis absorbed. Shape into ball. Divide into 4 flattish balls. Wrap and store in fridge for up to 2 weeks. Freeze to have a continuing supply on hand.
To make a baked pie shell:
Divide one of the flattish balls in half, using one half for pie shell. Wrap the other half for either storing in the fridge or freezing.
Roll out to fit pie plate, flute edges and prick all over with a fork.
Bake in 400 degree F oven about 10 to 15 minutes until lightly browned.