It's time for another Daring Bakers challenge. This month the challenge is a lemon meringue pie. A lemon meringue pie is a pie with a lemon filling and a meringue topping. I was particularly looking forward to this challenge as I have never had a lemon meringue pie and I like using lemon in sweet dishes.
Of course, I procrastinated until the very end. In fact I made the lemon meringue pie on the very last day. I completely forgot to pick up a pie plate and I had to use what I had on hand. I ended up using some mini spring form pans and a small circular baking dish.
Up until now I have not had so much luck with pie crusts. None of the pie crusts that I have made have been very good at all. This time I decided to try using a food processor to make the dough. The dough was really easy to make using the food processor. This pie crust turned out great! It was nice and light and flaky and golden brown. Right off at the start I was really pleased with this challenge if for no other reason than I had made some progress with my pie crusts! I will have to work on forming a nice looking edge the next time tough.
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup cold butter (cut into 1/2 inch pieces)
1/3 cup ice water
1. Place the flour, sugar, salt and butter in a food processor and pulse a few times to combine.
2. Add the water and pulse a few more times.
3. Press the dough together, wrap it in plastic and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
4. Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface.
5. Place the dough into the pie plate.
6. Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 20-25 minutes with foil on.
7. Remove the foil and bake until golden brown, about 10-15 minutes.
The lemon filling was pretty straight forward and easy to make. I really enjoy the way that lemon works in sweet dishes! I made sure that none of the filling left in the pan at the end went to waste. :)
2 cups water
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup cornstarch
5 egg yolks (beaten)
1/4 cup butter
3/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Bring the water to a boil in a sauce pan and set aside for 5 minutes.
2. Mix the sugar and cornstarch in a bowl.
3. Whisk the mixture into the water.
4. Bring the mixture back to a boil, whisking continuously.
5. Temper the eggs by adding a cup of the mixture to them and mixing them.
6. Pour the eggs into the sauce pan and whisk.
7. Bring to a bowl while whisking.
8. Add the butter and whisk until it is incorporated.
9. Add the lemon juice, zest and vanilla and mix.
10. Pour the mixture into the pie crust and cover with plastic so that a film does not form on the top and let cool
I have made meringue before, though the meringue that I made was a crispy and dry one where this one was nice and soft and moist. I sill have not been able to find any cream of tartar so I left it out. Since I don't have a mixer I pulled out my trusty pair of forks and beat the egg whites to peaks in no time. I almost didn't pull the pies out of the oven in time and the peaks of the meringue were browned pretty nicely. I was really pleased with the texture of this soft and moist meringue and it tasted pretty good.
5 egg whites (room temperature)
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1. Beat the egg whites, cream of tartar, salt and vanilla until they form soft peaks.
2. Slowly mix in the sugar.
3. Pour the meringue on top of the pie.
4. Bake in a preheated 375F oven until golden brown on top, about 15-20 minutes.
In the end the lemon meringue pies came together nicely. I, of course, had some right after taking the photos. The lemon meringue pies may have taken a bit of work to put together but they were well worth it. The crisp, light and flaky crust and the sweet lemon filling and the soft and sweet meringue topping really work well together. I need to try to start the next challenge before the last day the next time. Now I am off to take a look at the other Daring Bakers lemon meringue pies.
Meyer Lemon Bars
Key Lime Pie