Classic Lemon Meringue Pie: A Pucker-Perfect Treat

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This recipe isn’t just about creating a delicious dessert; it’s about capturing the essence of summer on a plate. The vibrant yellow filling bursts with citrusy goodness, perfectly complemented by the light and airy meringue topping. It’s a showstopper that’s surprisingly easy to make, even for novice bakers.

Ingredients:

Grandma’s Lemon Meringue Pie

For the Crust:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • 3-4 tablespoons ice water
  • For the Filling:
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs, separated
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 3 lemons)
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • For the Meringue:
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar

  • Instructions:

    1. Prepare the Crust: In a large bowl, whisk together flour and salt. Using a pastry cutter or your fingertips, cut the cold butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Gradually add ice water, a tablespoon at a time, until the dough just comes together. Be careful not to overmix.
    2. Form the Crust: Shape the dough into a disc, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Lightly flour a clean surface and roll out the chilled dough to a 12-inch circle. Carefully transfer the dough to a 9-inch pie plate and gently press it into the bottom and sides. Trim any excess dough from the edges. Crimp or flute the edges as desired. Prick the bottom of the crust with a fork a few times to prevent air bubbles. Bake the crust for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown. Let the crust cool completely before filling.
    3. Make the Filling: In a medium saucepan, whisk together sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Gradually whisk in the egg yolks and lemon juice until smooth. Cook the mixture over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens and begins to bubble. Reduce heat to low and simmer for an additional minute, stirring continuously. Remove from heat and stir in the softened butter until melted. Pour the filling into the cooled pie crust and let it cool completely at room temperature.
    4. Whip Up the Meringue: In a clean, grease-free bowl, whisk the egg whites with cream of tartar until foamy. Gradually add the sugar, one tablespoon at a time, while continuing to whisk on high speed until stiff peaks form. The meringue should be glossy and hold its shape well.
    5. Top the Pie: Spoon the meringue over the cooled lemon filling, spreading it evenly to the edges. Using a spoon or a piping bag with a star tip, create decorative peaks on the meringue.
    6. Bake the Meringue: Return the pie to the oven and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the meringue is golden brown. Watch it closely to avoid burning. Let the pie cool completely before slicing and serving.

    Nutrition Facts (per slice):

    Calories: 350 (approx.)

  • Fat: 18g (approx.)
  • Saturated Fat: 8g (approx.)
  • Cholesterol: 130mg (approx.)
  • Sodium: 120mg (approx.)
  • Carbohydrates: 38g (approx.)
  • Sugar: 30g (approx.)
  • Protein: 4g (approx.)

  • Note: These are approximate values and may vary depending on the specific ingredients used.

    Conclusion:

    This lemon meringue pie recipe is a delightful balance of sweet and tart, perfect for any occasion. The homemade crust is flaky and buttery, while the lemon filling is refreshingly tangy. The light and airy meringue adds a touch of sweetness and a beautiful texture. With its vibrant colors and delicious flavors, this pie is sure to be a crowd-pleaser!

    Frequently Asked Questions:

    1. Can I use store-bought pie crust? Absolutely! To save time, feel free to use a pre-made pie crust from the grocery store. Just follow the baking instructions on the package.