Lemons as you may or may not know, are my most favorite thing in the world. I feel about them as some feel about chocolate for instance. When I hear anything lemon I get all warm and fuzzy inside. Lemon Meringue Pie is one of those things. I don’t make very often because I’ve let my fear of “pie crust” kept me away. But no more. I’ve found a great recipe from Cooks Illustrated that is virtually hard to mess up.
Now its down to the lemon filling. I’ve tried home made (which I prefer), but if you don’t have time, there are some great boxed lemon fillings that are great also.
The meringue. Even though I make the meringue exactly as the recipe tells you, sometimes it comes out perfect, and sometimes not. There are many theory’s to why, but I don’t think anyone has really figured it out. If this pie doesn’t make your mouth water, I don’t know what will!
Lemon Meringue Pie
1/4 c. cornstarch
1/8 tsp. table salt
1-1/2 c. cold water
1 c. granulated sugar
6 large egg yolks
1 Tbsp lemon zest from 1 lemon
1/2 c. lemon juice from 2 to 3 lemons
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
Mix cornstarch with 1/3 cup water in small saucepan; bring to simmer, whisking occasionally at beginning and more frequently as mixture thickens. When mixture starts to simmer and turn translucent, remove from heat. Let cool while beating egg whites.
Heat oven to 325° F. Mix cream of tartar and sugar together. Beat egg whites and vanilla until frothy. Beat in sugar mixture, 1 tablespoon at a time; until sugar is incorporated and mixture forms soft peaks. Add cornstarch mixture, 1 tablespoon at a time; continue to beat meringue to stiff peaks. Remove plastic from filling and return to very low heat during last minute or so of beating meringue (to ensure filling is hot).
Pour filling into pie shell. Using a rubber spatula, immediately distribute meringue evenly around edge then center of pie to keep it from sinking into filling. Make sure meringue attaches to pie crust to prevent shrinking. Use spoon to create peaks all over meringue. Bake pie until meringue is golden brown, about 20 minutes. Transfer to wire rack and cool to room temperature. Serve.