I had never made a lemon meringue pie before. I’m not all that sure if I’ve even eaten many. However all that changed today when I made my very first one. In one of the books I have been reading with my students the main character makes a lemon meringue pie and I haven’t been able to get it off my mind ever since. I had seen ready-made pie crusts at the Pinoy Mart but when I went to get one they were all sold out. Undeterred my lust for this lemony treat lived on, and I finally picked up some ready to roll pie pastry at the foreign food mart in Itaewon. It was actually quite cheap, 6,500 for a pack of two. Yes I could have made my own pastry, but it’s not really the easiest thing to make and frankly life is just a too short. However I will have to master it sooner or later if I wish to achieve my dream of winning The Great British Bake off! I have to say, that considering this was the first I ever made one and it was cooked in a toaster oven I nailed it! Watch out Mary Berry….
Ready to roll pie crust (if you want to make your own, then good luck to you)
3 lemons (zest and juice)
100g of white sugar
4 egg yolks
2 tablespoons of corn flour
85g of butter
100ml orange juice
100ml of water
4 egg whites
200g of white sugar
2 teaspoons of corn flour
Take the pastry out of the packet, unroll it and fit it into your tin. In an ideal world my tin would have been bigger but C’est la vie. Bring the pastry over the edge and trim off the excess. Using a fork prick the surface of the pastry all over the pie.
Bake in the oven for 5-10 minutes. The instructions said 12-15 minutes but mine was done in a about 8, so keep an eye on it.
To make the lemon curd put the corn flour, sugar, lemon zest and juice into a saucepan and stir. Add the orange juice and water then turn on to a medium heat. Continue stirring, until it starts to bubble. Turn off the heat and add the butter. Continue to stir until the butter has melted, then whisk in the egg yolks one at a time. When the mixture has completely combined, turn the heat back on to low and stir continuously until the mixture begins to thicken and bubble.
To make the meringue, whisk the egg whites and a small pinch of salt until they have quadrupled in volume and form soft peaks. Add your sugar to the egg whites 2 tablespoons at a time and keep whipping on your highest setting. Some folks have enough elbow grease to do this by hand but I am not one of them. I got my mixer from Gmarket for a mere 27,000 and it’s the best thing I ever did. When all the sugar has been incorporated they should form stiff peaks which are shiny and glossy. Whisk in the cornflour then set aside. Warm up the lemon curd until it just begins to bubble. Then put the warm curd into the pie case and put blobs of the meringue all around the outside of the pie making sure to cover the crust. Cover the middle last so it doesn’t sink.
Put the pie in the oven and bake for about 20-30 minutes. I did 10 minutes on 150 then another 10 at 100. Your oven times will vary but this worked for me. Just keep an eye on it to make sure you don’t burn the top. When the pie is done take it out of the oven and leave to set for 2 hours. I was a bit of an eager beaver so my lemon curd was not perfectly set but it tasted damn good and that’s the main thing. Voilà there you have it scrummy yummy homemade lemon meringue pie.