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lemon meringue pie

July 24, 2008

This particular pie has ALWAYS been a challenge for me, with problems ranging from filling that didn’t set to weeping meringue. There are two basic schools of thought when it comes to weeping meringue. One side says cool the filling before topping with meringue, the other side says the filling should be hot when the meringue is spread on the pie. I have tried both methods, and have had weeping meringue in both cases. I scoured recipe books and internet sites searching for the secret to a happy meringue, but all I can find are suggestions to “help prevent” the problem. There is no fool proof cure, however Baking911 has some great information on meringue pies and baking in general. They happen to be on the “hot filling” side of the meringue debate. My brother suggested I try baking the meringue top separate from the pie, then crowning the lemon filling with a beautifully pre-cooked meringue. I think he may be on to something… I will try that and blog about it another day.

The following recipe has given me the most success, though I must caution that it is NOT foolproof. If you are a lemon-meringue lover, it is worth a shot.

Deep Dish Lemon Meringue Pie

  • 1 deep dish pie shell, baked
  • 5 eggs, separated
  • 1/2 c. lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp. lemon zest
  • 1/2 c. cornstarch
  • 1 1/3 c. white sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • pinch cream of tartar

Have all ingredients pre-measured and ready to go before you start.

Whisk together egg yolks, lemon juice, and lemon zest in medium bowl until thoroughly blended. Set aside.

In medium saucepan, combine 1 1/3 c. sugar, cornstarch and water. Cook and stir over medium heat untl mixture comes to a boil. Continue cooking until very thick and clear. Remove from heat. Whisk hot cornstarch mixture into egg yolk mixture 1/2 c. at a time, then add it all back to the saucepan. Stir in the butter and return to a boil. Boil for one minute, then remove from heat. Pour filling into pie shell and set aside while you make the meringue.

Beat egg whites and cream of tartar on high speed until foamy. Gradually add 1/2 cup sugar and continue beating until meringue is shiny and stiff peaks form. Immediately spread meringue onto filling, making sure meringue is sealed to crust all the way around the pie. Bake at 375 for 10 minutes, or until nicely browned.

Cool pie at room temperature for 45 minutes before refrigerating. Chill for 3-4 hours before serving.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 25, 2008 8:14 am

    I actually love the look of a weeping meringue. When I was a little girl & my mom would make a meringue pie I always looked forward to the dew that would form on top of the pie. My meringue pies always weep too but I have just assumed this went along with this type pie.

  2. scrabblenut permalink*
    July 25, 2008 8:41 am

    Its funny the things that we appreciate because of a childhood memory. To this very day, I prefer my oatmeal lumpy and my chocolate chip cookies flat. 🙂

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