Friday, 31 August 2012

Interrupted Pieday

We made a lemon meringue pie.
Well, actually we made a tarte au citron, we had a power cut before the meringue could go on so that part remains to be done.
However if you will take the meringue-making on trust* then here is our recipe

Lemon Meringue Pie


Pastry (I'm not going to include a recipe here, use whichever you like best, the one we used for the Bakewell tart is ok but it's better if you add about a tablespoon of caster sugar)
Three tablespoons of cornflour
225g of caster sugar
40g of butter
two lemons
three eggs
275ml of water

Put the pastry into a tart tin and prick the base, bake it blind if you want to but you don't absolutely have to**.

Dump the cornflour and fifty grams of thesugar into a bowl, stir them and add just enough of the water to bring it all together in a sticky, slimy, shiny mass.

Grate the zest from the lemons and squeeze them into a bowl.
Separate the eggs.

Put the rest of the water into a pan with the lemon zest, put it on the stove and bring it to the boil.

Stir the boiling water into the cornflour paste*** then return the mixture to the pan, bring it back to the boil and stir it for a while as it thickens.

Take it off the heat and add the lemon juice, the egg yolks and the butter, stirring it all well.

Pour this lemon curd into your pastry case.
Now is a very good time not to have a power cut.

Assuming you have avoided any power cuts it is now time to make the meringue.
Beat the egg whites till they form peaks****, if you are doing this with a small child they will get fed up long before the egg whites become meringue, it is absolutely not cheating to take over the whisking at this point as it teaches a valuable lesson about things being easier if you share the work and other stuff like that.

Once the egg whites are looking peaky begin to beat in the sugar a little at a time and continue until it's all combined.

Dollop the meringue on top of the pie and spread it out till the whole thing is covered.
You can do decorative squiggles at this point if you want.

Stick it all into the oven at your low pie setting (about 190 in our oven) for forty five minutes.

Take it out, be impressed by how like a real lemon meringue pie it looks and leave it for a little while before slicing and eating.

*We'll finish it today I promise
** I suppose it depends on your pastry recipe really, it does help when there's a sudden power cut and you have to leave the pie unfinished though.
***This is not a step for children, in other news the Earth goes around the Sun.
****Peaks! Not vaguely solid mounds, peaks!

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