This is a wonderful pie! I have had this recipe for many years, and I do not remember where I found it. If you love lemon meringue pie, this recipe is perfect for you. The filling is both sweet and tart. It has a lovely creamy texture to it. I like to make mountains of meringue, because it looks amazing when pilled high on top of the filling. I also use my water-whipped baked pastry shell for this recipe. Overall, you cannot go wrong with this beautiful and delicious pie.
I place plastic wrap over the egg yolks so they don't dry.
For the meringue, I use six egg whites and a 3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar.
When whipping your meringue, make sure that your egg whites are at room temperature and that all of your utensils and equipment are very clean. Use a non-reactive bowl. I use a stainless steel bowl, but a glass bowl will work too. If it is a very humid day, you may want to wait for a different day. The humidity in the air can weigh down your meringue, and it can shrink back quite a bit.
Before adding the pie filling to a prebaked pastry shell, I like to stir in one heaping tablespoon of meringue to the filling.
Make sure to 'seal' your meringue by spreading the meringue right up to the edge of the pastry and by connecting the pastry and the meringue together. Otherwise, the meringue may shrink back from the crust after it is cooked.
When you bake your pie, keep an eye on it towards the end of your cooking time. Ovens vary in heat, your pie may take longer or shorter to cook. I have to turn my pie half way through the cooking time for even browning. You are looking for a light browning all over the meringue.
When cutting your pie, use a sharp knife. I like to run my knife under hot tap water. It makes it easier to cut through the meringue.
1 1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
4 egg yolks
1 3/4 cup water
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1 heaping tablespoon meringue
4 to 6 egg whites, room temperature
1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 baked 9 inch pastry shell
For the meringue, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar at high speed with an electric mixer, just until foamy. Add the sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until stiff peaks form and the sugar dissolves (2 to 4 minutes). Add the vanilla, beating well. Yields enough for 1 (9 inch) pie.
Combine the sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a large heavy sauce pan; whisk in egg yolks, water, and lemon juice. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until mixture thickens and boils. Boil the mixture, mixing constantly for 1 minute. Remove the sauce pan from the heat, and stir in the butter and lemon rind. Add one heaping tablespoon of the meringue to filling mixture. Spoon the filling into the baked pastry shell. Spread the meringue over the hot filling to the edge of the pastry shell. Bake at 300F for 20 to 25 minutes.
(edited by Anna Weicht)