Daring Bakers- Lemon Meringue Pie Jan 2008

Hello, and welcome to this month’s Daring Bakers Challenge! This month we all got together and baked lemon meringue pies… or in my case, tartelets! I made mine in cupcake pans, rather than free-form or in a pie tin, and they were not as aesthetically pleasing as they might have been… but I think they did just fine, don’t you?


This was not only my first time making meringue pies, it was also my first time eating it! I thought it was interesting, but I admit to being a much bigger fan of whipped creams. My volunteer eaters, however, thought it was great, and that the texture was spot on. A lot of people had difficulty with this recipe, but I didn’t– I rather suspect that part of the reason I didn’t was because I used fresh farm eggs; while in ordinary baking, too-fresh eggs can make everything taste too eggy and feel too stiff, the freshness in these eggs seemed to give it extra structure.


I modified this recipe to make it 2/5th the size, which still wound up filling 12 cupcake tins. I also made the filling and the crusts the night before, filling and topping the tarts the day of. The meringues lost some texture in the next 24 hours, but still tasted great… and thanks to the lemon, while the tarts were sweet, they weren’t ridiculously so.

The recipe is from Wanda’s Pie in the Sky by Wanda Beaver, and was picked by Jen from The Canadian Baker.
Lemon Meringue Pie
Makes one 10-inch (25 cm) pie or 6 small ones– or 30 cupcakes!
Recipe from: Wanda’s Pie in the Sky by Wanda Beaver.
For the Crust:
3/4 cup (170 gram) cold butter; cut into ½-inch (1.2 cm) pieces
2 cups (475 mL) all-purpose flour
1/4 cup (60 mL) granulated sugar
1/4 tsp (1.2 mL) salt
1/3 cup (80 mL) ice waterFor the Filling:
2 cups (475 mL) water
1 cup (240 mL) granulated sugar
1/2 cup (120 mL) cornstarch
5 egg yolks, beaten
1/4 cup (50 gram) butter
3/4 cup (180 mL) fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp (15 mL) lemon zest
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extractFor the Meringue:
5 egg whites, room temperature
1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) cream of tartar (I omitted)
1/4 tsp (1.2 mL) salt
1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) vanilla extract
3/4 cup (180 mL) granulated sugar

To Make the Crust:
Make sure all ingredients are as cold as possible. Using a food processor or pastry cutter and a large bowl, combine the butter, flour, sugar and salt.Process or cut in until the mixture resembles coarse meal and begins to clump together. Sprinkle with water, let rest 30 seconds and then either process very briefly or cut in with about 15 strokes of the pastry cutter, just until the dough begins to stick together and come away from the sides of the bowl. Turn onto a lightly floured work surface and press together to form a disk. Wrap in plastic and chill for at least 20 minutes. (Mine was wetter than one might think reasonable at this point)

Allow the dough to warm slightly to room temperature if it is too hard to roll. On a lightly floured board (or countertop) roll the disk to a thickness of 1/8 inch (0.3 cm). Cut a circle about 2 inches (5 cm) larger than the pie plate and transfer the pastry into the plate by folding it in half or by rolling it onto the rolling pin. Turn the pastry under, leaving an edge that hangs over the plate about 1/2 inch (1.2 cm). Flute decoratively. Chill for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Line the crust with foil and fill with metal pie weights or dried beans. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Carefully remove the foil and continue baking for 10 to 15 minutes, until golden. Cool completely before filling.

To Make the Filling:
Bring the water to a boil in a large, heavy saucepan. Remove from the heat and let rest 5 minutes. Whisk the sugar and cornstarch together. Add the mixture gradually to the hot water, whisking until completely incorporated. Return to the heat and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly until the mixture comes to a boil. The mixture will be very thick. Add about 1 cup (240 mL) of the hot mixture to the beaten egg yolks, whisking until smooth. Whisking vigorously, add the warmed yolks to the pot and continue cooking, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to a boil. Remove from the heat and stir in butter until incorporated. Add the lemon juice, zest and vanilla, stirring until combined. Pour into the prepared crust. Cover with plastic wrap to prevent a skin from forming on the surface, and cool to room temperature. (I chilled mine overnight.)

To Make the Meringue:
Preheat the oven to 375ºF (190ºC). Using an electric mixer beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar, salt and vanilla extract until soft peaks form. Add the sugar gradually, beating until it forms stiff, glossy peaks. Pile onto the cooled pie, bringing the meringue all the way over to the edge of the crust to seal it completely. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden. Cool on a rack. Serve within 6 hours to avoid a soggy crust (my crust wasn’t soggy even after 36… they didn’t last past that with houseguests around!).

DB Logo



Filed under cake, Cookies, daring bakers, dessert, fruit, Uncategorized, vegetarian

30 responses to “Daring Bakers- Lemon Meringue Pie Jan 2008

  1. Your little pies look quite cute. At least, they didn’t weep and stayed happy!
    I read somewhere (part of my research on LMP) that meringue is best made with eggs a couple of days old.

  2. I think they look lovely!

  3. Beautiful tartlets! I think they are more than fine. 🙂

    Thanks for participating!


  4. Hi Tanya!Good job on the challenge 🙂

  5. Thanks!

    Aparna, the eggs I had were a few days old… I think that problem that some people ran into is that by the time eggs hit the supermarket, they’re often already a few weeks old, so they’ve lost some structure. Too much structure and they don’t whip enough to be fluffy. Too little and they weep too much!

  6. Very nice little pies!! I think my meringue was ultra fluffy because I made sure the eggs were room temperature to almost warm. That’s the only thing I can think of. I think your meringue looks great though! Thanks for visiting my blog!

  7. Very nice! This was a fun challenge, I thought. Thanks for visiting my blog!

  8. Nice job on your tarts! Wish I had farm-fresh eggs- I miss them from when I was little.
    What beautiful first LMPs.

  9. Thanks for stopping by and for leaving such a great tip! They look great!

    As for meringue patterns, I made sure the meringue was very stiff first and then used a back of a spoon to form peaks. Believe others used a piping bag or even their fingers! Still, I think you did a fab job with it!

  10. Whoa! We both made cupcakes AND ate them with marionberry preserves?!? We must be separated at birth twins or something!?! 😉 Love the CupPies and love the spiky meringue! Great job! (wow~ I realized I just used a lot of exclamation points…must resist urge)

  11. They are so cute! Great job!

  12. Yum! Great job on this challenge.

  13. I’m totally jealous of the farm fresh eggs. One of these days…

    And those cute little tarts remind me of the sweets that come on a three-tiered tray at tea time. Very nice! The preserves really sounds like an excellent idea. Next time…

  14. Yum, looks great. The eggs would have made a difference, I agree.

  15. Love the cute little pies – they look great.

  16. They’re very cute! Great Job!! :O)

  17. Wow, I had no idea that fresh eggs vs. store-bought would have different effects on the finished product (not that I’m using eggs in my baking these days).
    You tarts look great!
    Jane of VeganBits.com

  18. how cute are the tiny little pies!

  19. I love the fluffy meringue. Hopefully I’ll have a source of fresh eggs soon!

  20. beautiful LMP!! till next challenge 🙂

  21. Fluffy meringue is a delight in my book. Lucky you to be able to get fresh farm eggs!! I enjoyed this pie and all the stir it created in the group.

  22. Jen

    Those look so beautiful and cute! Great job. I’m jealous of the fresh eggs too!

  23. Congrats on your very first lemon meringue!

  24. KJ

    They are so cute. You did a great job.

    The range of outcomes with this recipe is so interesting. It’s what the Daring Bakers are all about. Onto the next challenge!!!!!

  25. Lovely job on your tarts! Your meringues are really cute!

    Natalie @ Gluten A Go Go

  26. Mer

    I like the way you described your experience in italics next to the steps in the original recipe. :0)

  27. cookiedoc

    Your meringue *does* look wonderful! Glad your tasters enjoyed it.

  28. You did a great job with January’s challenge…I think your muffin-tarts are adorable! And I think you’re right… fresh eggs make superior curd.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s