Last Sunday was Mothers Day in the UK. We (my sister and I) gave my mum some lilies, some cards (my sisters was crazy and mine wasn't) and of course, a lemon meringue pie.
I made the pastry the day before and blind baked it. The next day I made the lemon filling and meringue and constructed it before placing it in oven and leaving it to my Dad to look after while my mum and I went for a run. We then came back and about 40 minutes later ate a large slice of pie. Oops.
The lemon filling was very fun to make. You mix cornstarch and water and then mix it into hot water with melted sugar. The recipe said that the cornstarch mixture was meant to be a paste and mine wasn't so I wasn't sure it was going to work. I poured it in anyway and mixed it. IT BECAME THE COOLEST JELLY THING EVER. I got very excited.
Recipe based on the one from Pie: 300 Tried-and-True Recipes for Delicious Homemade Pie. (Colonnade Cafeteria's)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4 inch pieces
1/4 of a cup cold water
1 1/4 cups warm water
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp sugar
Pinch of salt
2 tbsp cornstarch
3 large egg yolks
3 tbsp lemon juice (fresh)
1 tsp grated lemon zest
1 tsp cold butter
4 large egg whites, at room temperature
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup sugar
To make the pastry, mix the flour, sugar and salt together in a bowl. Add the butter and mix until it is like breadcrumbs. Add in water gradually until it forms a dough. Chill for at least 1 hour and for up to a day.Blind bake in a 400°F/200°C oven for 15 minutes or until it is beginning to brown.
In a bowl, beat the egg yolks, lemon juice and zest with an electric mixture until frothy and pale yellow in colour. Whisk about 2 tbsp of the sugar mixture in. Continue to add this in until you have added about 1/2 a cup. Place the butter on top of the remaining sugar mixture. Slowly pour the egg yolk mixture in in a long stream, whisking vigorously to stop it from curdling. Place to the side while you make your meringue.
Using an electric mixer, beat the egg whites until they start to foam. Gradually beat in the sugar and salt. Increase the speed until it is high and beat until they are glossy and forming peaks.
Place your lemon mixture into the pastry case. Gently spoon the meringue on top. Once all the meringue has been placed on top you can spread it out so that it reaches the edges. Bake in a 375°F/190°C oven for 40 minutes, rotating the pie 180 degrees halfway through the time.
Transfer to a wire rack to cool and serve warm/cold.