Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe

To unmould the pie, set the tin centrally on a can of food; the side of the tin will drop down, leaving the pie on the tin base. Slide onto a plate.

Time: 1 Hour 25 Minutes
Serving: 8 Slices

400g (14oz) ready-made shortcrust pastry
6 eggs, separated
3 tbsp cornflour 3 tbsp plain flour
400g (14oz) caster sugar 1 tbsp grated lemon zest juice of 3 lemons
45g (11∕2 oz) unsalted butter, diced, plus extra for greasing
1∕2 tsp cream of tartar
1∕2 tsp pure vanilla extract

1. The oven should be heated to 200 degrees Celsius (400degF/Gas 6,). Lightly grease the 23cm (9in) loose-bottomed flan. Make the pastry roll out on a lightly floured , surface and place it on the tin.

2. Cover the case of pastry with greaseproof papers, then fill it with baking beans. Place the baking sheet on top and bake the "blind" for 15-20 minutes or until the pastry appears like a pale golden. Remove the parchment paper and beans, place them back in the oven and bake for about 5-8 minutes to ensure the dough is dry and golden. Transfer the pastry to an oven rack and let it cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 180 degC (350degF/Gas 4,).

3. Beat the egg yolks lightly in the bowl. Mix the cornflour, flour and the 225g (8oz) of sugar in a saucepan with 360ml (12fl 12 oz) water. Stir gently until the sugar is dissolved. Then, increase the heat and cook stirring for 3-5 minutes , or until the mixture begins to get thicker.

4. Mix a few spoonfuls of the hot mixture into egg yolks. Put this mixture in the pan, and slowly bring it to a boil, stirring frequently. It should boil for three minutes, and then add the juice and zest of the lemon and butter. Continue to boil for another 2-minutes or so until the mix is glossy and thick continuously stirring and scraping the sides of the pan as needed. Remove the pan from the stove; cover the pan to keep warm.

5. The egg yolks are whisked in an enormous clean bowl until it becomes foamy. Sprinkle on the tartar cream and whisk it in. Continue to whisk, adding the remaining sugar 1 tablespoon at each time. Incorporate the extract of vanilla along with the final spoonful of sugar. Continue whisking until the meringue has become dense and glossy.

6. Fill the case with the lemon mixture, and then add the meringue on top and spread it out so that it is covered all the way to the edge of the pastry. Place the tart cake tin on the baking sheet. The meringue bakes for between 12 and 15 minutes until it turns slightly golden. Transfer the pie onto a rack on wire and allow to cool completely prior to serving.

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