I held another contest in one of my classes. The winner was a male student again and he picked a lemon meringue pie! I never used to be a fan of fluffy pies but I am starting to come around. The meringue adds a nice sweet balance to the tart lemon. This recipe is adapted from one I found on Chaos in the Kitchen. I didn’t want to give a whole pie away without being able to eat any (piggish, I know . . .sorry Eden) and I didn’t want to give away a pie with a big piece missing out of it so I chose to make mini pies. I halved the recipe but probably shouldn’t have because they are so delicious! I ate one so my student will get 5. Unless I eat another (highly likely) in which case my student will get 4 mini pies . . .
For the Crust:
I make my pie crusts by adding equal parts butter and flour (in this case 1 1/2 cups of each) and then adding a pinch of salt and a pinch of sugar. Next, I ready about 1/4 cup ice water but I don’t always use it all. I add a little at a time until I get it the consistency I desire.
For the mini pies I took about 2 TB of dough and pushed it into a cupcake mold. I then put a cupcake liner in each and filled them with beans to hold the dough down while baking the shells. If you don’t do this they will puff up all over and be hard to fill with lemon.
I baked them for about 10 minutes on 350 but probably should have gone a little longer for a better, golden color.
If you do a half recipe for the recipe below you will have enough dough. If you use the full recipe below, double this pie crust recipe.
Old Fashioned Lemon Meringue Pieprep 10 min, cook 10 min, chill over night
- 1/3 cup cornstarch
- 1 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 cup water, divided, boil 1 cup
- 1/2 cup lemon juice
- 4 eggs, divided
- 3 tbsp butter, chopped into bits
- 1 tbsp lemon zest
- pinch cream of tartar
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- Prepare and bake a single pie crust. Heat oven to 375ºF.
- In a medium saucepan (without heat) combine dry ingredients, cornstarch, sugar, and salt.
- Add 1/2 cup cold water and lemon juice, whisk to combine until smooth.
- Beat egg yolks thoroughly and add to liquid in pan.
- Boil remaining cup of water and add to pan, whisking until smooth. Turn on heat to medium high.
- Bring mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. Once thick, turn heat to medium and simmer, stirring constantly, for another minute or until well-gelled.
- Remove from heat and stir in butter and lemon zest. Pour into pie shell.
- Beat egg whites with a pinch of cream of tartar until soft peaks.
- Add sugar and vanilla, continue beating until stiff peaks.
- Spread or pipe meringue on top of mini pies.
- Bake pie for 8 to 10 minutes or until meringue is golden.
- Cool on a wire rack until room temperature then chill over night in the fridge.
It’s okay to fill the mini pies all the way up to the top with the lemon filling, they won’t bake up and over.
I used a large star tip to pipe my filling.
Keep an eye on them while they are baking, it doesn’t take too long for them to get brown. Mine got a little darker than I wanted but the taste is superb!