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Lemon Meringue Pie

Lemon Meringue Pie is an American classic and with good reason.  This recipe addresses weeping, wet fillings, and sliding fillings while keeping all the things that make this a great dessert

Ingredients

Pie Crust

  • 1 3/4 cups sifted cake flour (6 1/3 ounces or 180 grams)
  • 1/3 cup sifted all-purpose flour (scant 1 1/2 ounces or 40 grams)
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces and frozen until hard (90 grams or 3 ounces)
  • 3 tablespoons shortening (like Crisco) frozen and cut into pieces (45 grams or 1 1/2 oz.)
  • 2 tablespoons beaten egg
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 5 tablespoons water, chilled and divided

Lemon Filling

  • 4 eggs, separated ((68 grams or 2 2/3 ounces)
  • 1 1/3 cups water
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar (250 grams or 9 ounces)
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch (45 grams or 1 1/2 ounces)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons butter, cut in small pieces (45 grams mor 1 12 ounces)
  • 2/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • 1 fully baked 9" pie shell

Meringue

  • 4 egg whites from above (128 grams or 4 1/2 ounces)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 cup sugar (200 grams or 7 ounces)
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch, optional

Instructions

Pie Crust - go here for how to photos

  1. Place both flours and the salt in the processor bowl.  Pulse several times to mix.  Place the butter evenly over the flour and pulse until the butter is in large pieces.  Add the frozen shortening and continue to pulse until the shortenings are pea sized.
  2. Combine the egg, lemon juice and water.  Pour in a circle over the processor contents.  Pulse until it forms clumps.  Pour out onto a lightly floured work surface.  Push the clumps together into a ball.  Knead 4 or 5 times for form a dough.  Pat into a circle about 1 inch thick.  Wrap in film and refrigerate a minimum of 2 hours or overnight.
  3. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  Place the oven rack in the lowest position.
  4. On a lightly floured surface, roll out to a circle approximately 13 inches.  Place in the pie pan and fit into corners.  Cut the overhang an even 1 inch all the way around.  Tuck the crust under and flute the edges.  To bake blind, freeze for 30 or more minutes until hard.  Line with foil, and fill with beans.  Bake for 20 minutes in the oven.  Remove the beans by bringing the four corners of the foil together and lifting out.  Return to the oven and bake for approximately 18 to 20 minutes until lightly browned and completely baked.

Filling

  1. Separate the eggs, placing the yolks and whites in different bowls.  Set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan, whisk together all of the ingredients except the butter and the pie crust.  Place over medium heat and, whisking constantly, bring the mixture to a boil.  Boil for one minute.  It will be very, very thick.  Boil for one minute.  Remove from the heat.Cooked lemon filling
  3. Submerge the butter under the sauce and let it sit for a few minutes to melt.  Whisk gently to combine all.  Butter added to filling for Lemon Meringue Pie
  4. Immediately pour it into the pie shell.Filled Pie Shell
  5. Cover directly with film and let come to room temperature.  Do not refrigerate.
  6. When it is room temperatures, make the meringue.

Meringue

  1. Place the oven rack to the bottom rung.  Preheat the oven to hi broil.
  2. Place the egg whites and cream of tartar in a mixing bowl.  Beat until soft peaks begin to form. Whipping Egg Whites
  3. Gradually add the sugar. Adding sugar to the egg whites
  4. Beat to really stiff peaks.Stiffly whipped egg whites for Lemon Meringue Pie
  5. Place in a piping bag fitted with a large open star (#8 or 9 open star) and pipe the meringue onto the lemon filling starting at the inside edge of the crust.  Make sure the meringue attaches to the pie crust all the way around.  Then pipe in concentric circles towards the middle.  Pipe more meringue on top of the already piped meringue until it is all used. Alternately, just spoon it on and make swirls with the spoon making sure you are attaching it all the way around to the crust.Piping meringue on inside edge of pie crust

Piping meringue

 

Piping more meringue

  1. Place the pie on a rimmed baking sheet and into the oven for about 1 minute and 15 seconds or until lightly browned.  Watch it carefully as the top most peaks of the crust will burn quickly.  Cool completely before cutting.
  2. Store in the refrigerator.Lemon Meringue Pie

Notes

This pie will keep in the refrigerator for up to 4 days with no weeping, sliding, getting wet, etc.  

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