Authentic Sweet & Tart Lemon Meringue Pie

Growing up, my absolute favourite dessert to eat was lemon meringue pie. I remember desiring as my birthday cake even! But when I think of a lemon meringue pie I think of a light fluffy meringue which is browned from the heat of an oven, you know with those beautiful browned tips? Well I recently tried a lemon meringue pie here and I was so incredibly put off. My friends who are both South African told me that what I had was what is South African but I even googled photos of what I know as the pie and was told off that that isn’t what is known here.

They use meringue cookies as a meringue topping!
They use meringue cookies as a meringue topping!

So I thought I would make a lemon meringue pie as I know it to show my friends. Last night I made a lemon meringue pie from scratch to test on my parents and if it turned out amazingly I would later make another one for my friends. Thankfully mom and dad both loved the pie that I will most definitely be making another one!

Though I am never whisking my egg whites to make a meringue again. It took me probably more than thirty-five minutes to make a meringue. My right arm was ready to fall off. I was even wishing Austin had hands instead of paws so he could have whisked for me. If he could speak he would have told you that too.

Meringue Held Up

Anyway, I got the recipe from the Spiced Blog. I did look at multiple lemon meringue pie recipes but this one seemed the easiest to read and make. The direct link for the recipe can be found here.

Fresh Lemon Meringue Pie

Ingredients:

  • 1 batch of phyllo pastry, store bought
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 ½ cups (340g) white sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons (9.38g) cornstarch
  • 1 1/3 cups (315ml) water
  • ½ cup (118ml) lemon juice
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon zest
  • 3 Tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 4 egg whites
  • ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 Tablespoons (19g) white sugar
  • Powdered sugar

Instructions:

Pie Crust

  1. Preheat oven to 218ᵒC (425ᵒF)
  2. Roll the pie dough into a 9” (23cm) pie pan, press pie crust into dish and poke with several holes from a fork. Bake for 17-20 minutes or until shell is a golden brown color.
  3. Remove pie crust from oven and allow to cool.

Lemon Filling

  1. In a medium bowl, slightly beat the egg yolks and set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, cornstarch, water, lemon juice, and lemon zest. Bring mixture to a boil on medium-high heat.
  3. Once mixture begins to boil, gradually stir about ½ cup into the bowl with the egg yolks.
  4. Transfer egg yolk mixture back into the saucepan with the remaining lemon juice mixture. Whisk until combined and bring mixture to boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly.
  5. Remove saucepan from heat and stir in butter. Transfer filling into the cooled pie crust.

Meringue Topping

  1. Preheat oven to 176ᵒC (350ᵒF)
  2. Using a medium bowl, combine egg whites, cream of tartar, and vanilla. Whip until foamy.
  3. Gradually add the sugar and continue whipping until meringue is stiff and glossy (this took me 35+ minutes, so use a mixer)
  4. Spread the meringue on top of the lemon filling, dust pie with powdered sugar and bake for 8-10 minutes or until meringue turns light golden brown. Allow pie to cool to room temperature and then cover lightly and place it in the refrigerator.
  5. Serve chilled.

Lemon Meringue Slice

Although my arm (and back) hurt from overworking, the pie came out PERFECTLY!

Though personally I wouldn’t have dusted the pie with powdered sugar, so next time I’ll probably omit that, though it did turn out quite well.

It is just a shame that as of today both mom and dad are on a diet of only meat and veg meaning no more pie for them. Luckily our housekeeper will be coming in tomorrow and she has quite the sweet tooth. So much that I’ve notice she even at my homemade baked dog treats I made last month! Thankfully they were vegetarian and more like a sweet treat with agave and honey in it with cinnamon. That wouldn’t have been good if they were non-vegetarian with ground beef in them – YUCK.

So hopefully Lizzie will eat more than enough of the lemon meringue pie! Someone should and I’d rather it not be me! Anyway I hope you all enjoy this recipe and make it yourself!

Happy eating!

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