The only thing that trumps chocolate for me (when it comes to sweet things anyway) is a classic lemon meringue pie. And finally, I’ve nailed it. My favourite part is the lemon curd (obviously) but it’s also important to get the meringue component right so that together with the pastry, the flavours and textures can compliment each other. I prefer to make my own pastry, but if you’re feeling lazy (or just short on time) sweet crust pastry from the supermarket will do just fine. The last few times I have made this recipe I have made the pastry the night before so that it has time to cool in the fridge over night – which means on the day there is one less thing to worry about, and gives me time to stop at the supermarket for emergency pastry if necessary!
- 300g pastry* (or 2 sheets of thawed sweet short pastry)
- 1/4 c cornflour
- 2 t lemon zest
- 1/2 c lemon juice
- 3/4 c cold water
- 1/2 c sugar
- 3 egg yolks
- 1 T butter
- 3 egg whites
- 1/2 c caster sugar
- Roll out the pastry, put in a lined pie dish and chill for 10 minutes. Blind bake it for 15 minutes, remove the rice/beans and bake for another 5 minutes. The pastry should be cooked.
- Meanwhile, make the filling by combining the cornflour, lemon zest and lemon juice in a saucepan. Add water and boil. Stir in sugar, egg yolks and butter.
- To make the meringue topping, beat the egg whites until stiff but not dry. Beat in the sugar a spoonful at a time.
- Pour the filling onto the cooked pastry base and spoon the meringue topping over the filling. Swirl into points and tips. Bake for 15-20 minutes at 190°C.
* If you want to make your own sweet shortcrust pastry, sift 2 c flour into a mixing bowl and add 150 g worth of cubed butter. Rub the butter into the flour until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Stir in 1/2 c sugar, followed by 2 egg yolks and 1 T water if it is still quite dry. Mix quickly to a stiff dough. Knead lightly into a rectangular block, wrap well and chill for 1 hour. It is important that you don’t overwork the dough because it will lose that flaky, melt-in-the-mouth deliciousness.