The beauty of the lemon meringue pie – other than it being my favourite dessert in the world – is that it goes with so many main courses. From a tasty chicken salad to tender oven-baked lamb loins, the lemon meringue is a perfect end-of-meal treat.
Sorry boys, I promise more beef next week!
- 200g plain flour
- Pinch of salt
- 100g chilled unsalted butter, chopped
- 2 tbsp cold water
- Mix flour and salt in a large bowl.
- Add the butter and rub into the flour mixture until it resembles bread crumbs.
- Add a little water to the mixture and stir with a knife until mixture begins to come together into a ball.
- Lightly flour the workbench and knead briefly to form a smooth, firm dough.
- Wrap the ball of dough in glad-wrap and chill in refrigerator for half an hour.
- Roll the pastry out on the floured workbench to 5mm thick and drape over pastry tart pan, pressing the dough into the pan and trimming the edges.
- Prick the base with a fork and chill for 20 minutes.
- Line pastry with uncooked rice (to keep it weighted) and bake in the oven for 10 minutes at approximately 180 degrees.
- Empty the rice from the pastry and add the lemon butter and top with the meringue mixture (recipe below).
- Cook for a following 10 minutes till the pastry is crispy and the meringue is golden.
N.B. You can use pre-made shortcrust pastry for the tarts – in my view, acceptable ‘cheating’ – but the real deal does taste just that little bit better.
- 4 eggs
- ¾ cup sugar
- ½ cup lemon juice
- ¼ cup water
- 2tsp lemon rind, finely grated
- 125g butter, chopped
- Whisk the eggs and sugar together in a bowl over a saucepan of boiling water.
- Gradually add the water and the lemon juice and mix well.
- Add the butter and lemon rind and mix continuously, still over the water, until it thickens and coats the back of a spoon.
N.B. What you don’t use for the meringues pour into sterilised jars. You can make a double mixture, as the lemon butter will keep for a few weeks.
- 4 large egg whites
- Pinch of salt
- 200g caster sugar
- Beat the egg whites and the salt till soft peaks are formed.
- Gradually beat in the sugar a little at a time.
- Once the mixture is firm and glossy, it’s ready to top the pies.
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