When I saw all the citrus meringue pies being baked on the Bake Off a couple of weeks ago I was suddenly in the mood to try making one myself. I chose to make the classic lemon meringue pie and for my first ever attempt I think I did a good job!
For the pastry
175g plain flour
1 tbsp icing sugar
1 egg yolk
For the lemon filling
2 tbsp cornflour
100g caster sugar
Grated zest of 2 lemons
Juice from the 2 lemons
Juice from 1 large orange
3 egg yolks and one whole egg
For the meringue
4 egg whites
200g caster sugar
2 tsp cornflour
In a food processor mix together the flour, sugar, egg yolk and icing sugar. Blend until just combined (don’t overwork the mix).
Take the pastry mix out of the processor and place onto a floured surface, with your hands smooth the pastry into a ball, sprinkle some flour on top and roll it out with a rolling pin.
Once rolled out, line a flan tin with the pastry and prick the base with a fork. Line base with foil (shiny side face down) and put into the fridge for around 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes pre heat the oven to gas mark 6 (200 degrees celcius), take the pastry out of the fridge and pour some baking weights on top of base and blind bake in the oven for 15 minutes.
Whilst the pastry is baking start the lemon filling. In a medium sized saucepan, mix the cornflour, lemon zest and sugar then add the strained lemon juice to the mix a little bit at a time on a medium heat. Add the fresh strained orange juice and keep stirring until filling is thick and starts bubbling. Once the mix has started bubbling take it off the heat and leave to one side.
When the pastry has baked for 15 minutes take it out of the oven and remove the baking weights and foil, return to oven and bake for a further 5-7 minutes until the pastry looks golden.
Now start the meringue. Whisk the 4 egg whites until thick and soft peaks are formed. Then slowly mix in half the sugar a little bit at a time. Once half the sugar is in add the cornflour and then the rest of the sugar – still a little bit at a time. Mix until thick and shiny.
Quickly bring the lemon filling back to a heat and pour into the pastry case. Spoon on the meringue starting form the edges so the meringue doesn’t sink into the middle. Once all the meringue is on place in the oven at gas mark 3 for 20 minutes until meringue looks crisp and brown on the edges.
Once baked turn the oven off but leave the pie in the oven for 30 minutes so the meringue doesn’t collapse. Take out of the oven and chill in the fridge for at least one hour then dig in!