I love birthdays, celebrations, and baking up something special for my friends on their day — it’s always fun, but especially fun when the request is something out of the ordinary. This year, my stunning friend Rachel wanted some lemon merengue pie… I’ve never made this before, and had been told horror stories from talented friends of the merengue shrinking or the lemon filling being liquidy when sliced, so I proceeded with extreme caution, and even used a pre-made pie crust as to not waste a perfectly good crust on a disaster of a pie. Fortunately, I overwhelmed myself for no reason, because the pie came out perfect!
You will need:
For the lemon filling:
1 cup white sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups whole milk*
2 lemons, juiced and zested
2 tablespoons butter
4 egg yolks, beaten
For the merengue:
4 egg whites
6 tablespoons white sugar
1 (9 inch) pie crust, baked
*some recipes seem to call for water rather than milk, I personally thought that would contribute to a watered down lemon filling, so I went with whole milk 🙂
Start off by preheating your oven to 350. To Make Lemon Filling, whisk together 1 cup sugar, flour, cornstarch, and salt in a sauce pan. Stir in water, lemon juice and lemon zest. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until mixture comes to a boil. Stir in butter. Place egg yolks in a small bowl and gradually whisk in 1/2 cup of hot sugar mixture. Whisk egg yolk mixture back into remaining sugar mixture in the sauce pan. Bring to a boil and continue to cook, stirring constantly, until thick. Remove from heat. Pour filling into baked pastry shell.
For the merengue: In a large bowl (preferably with your standing mixer, if that’s an option!), whip egg whites until foamy. Add sugar gradually, and continue to whip until stiff peaks form. Spread meringue over pie, sealing the edges at the crust.
Bake in preheated oven for about 8-10 minutes, or until meringue is golden brown.
For a pie that had me so nervous, this came out beautifully, especially by first time standards! If you’re looking to make your first lemon merengue, this recipe is the one for you 🙂