Pucker Up! Daring Baker’s Challenge January…

January’s Daring Baker’s Challenge was hosted by Jen, Canadian Baker, and she chose the lovely lemon meringue pie. I have to start by saying I’m kicking myself for procrastinating until the last weekend, because I forgot I had my pilates training all weekend. So, I was up at 10:00pm Friday night making parts of lemon meringue pie and was rushing to finish and take pictures Saturday morning. Next month I’m not going to procrastinate!!

My favorite part of the challenge was making the meringue. I piled it on so high, my boys were like, “Whoa mommy, what is that crazy thing?” It was tall, golden brown and beautiful. It was my first experience making it and it turned out very nice.

The crust turned out pretty good and the lemon filling was good too. It was my first time making a homemade lemon filling, it turned out nice and thick and seemed just as it should be! The only thing I noticed, was after about an hour after the pie baked, there was a clear liquid forming under the meringue. It didn’t seem to mess things up though.

All in all, a great challenge. I wish I wouldn’t have procrastinated until the last few days, I would have liked to spend more time on the pics, and tried the free form crusts, but there’s always next month!! Check out the Daring Baker’s Blogroll for other great lemon meringue pies!

Lemon Meringue Pie

(recipe from “Wanda’s Pie in the Sky” by Wanda Beaver)
For the Crust:
3/4 cup cold butter; cut into ½-inch (1.2 cm) pieces
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup ice water

For the Filling:
2 cups water
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup cornstarch
5 egg yolks, beaten
1/4 cup butter
3/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp lemon zest
1 tsp vanilla extract

For the Meringue:
5 egg whites, room temperature
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup 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.

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 (.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.

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.

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47 Responses
  1. Ari

    I would recommend using powdered sugar in the merengue rather than granulated, that might be where the liquid came from- I’ve been baking these pies for years since they are my grandma’s speciality so I’ve pretty much got them down!

  2. Dolores

    I’m not surprised you enjoyed the meringue so much… it looks absolutely sensational. Great job with January’s challenge, even if it was more rushed than you’d have preferred.

  3. Quellia

    Your pie looks great, with nice spikes!
    And who knew there were that many food bloggers named Jenny! 🙂
    aka Quellia

  4. The Lyman Family

    Jenny your pie looks devine! seriously, I don’t even like lemon meringue but this one looks TEMPTING 🙂 Did you share it with grandpa? Isn’t it his FAV?

  5. KayKat

    Looks fabulous! I wish I had achieved your lemon curd consistency, mine got a bit runny, but tasted great 🙂

  6. Passionate baker...& beyond

    Great looking pie jenny…& my kids were over the moon too when they saw the meringue. My son of course had dreams of sky-high whipped cream!! Love your blog & recipes…have been browsing for a while! Thanks for dropping by! LOL

  7. javagirlkt's cookin'

    I had the same problem with liquid gathering under the meringue. But your pie is still beautiful! Nice work 🙂

  8. Suzanne

    Looks yummy and the crust looks nice and flaky–I always screw up crusts:-) Don’t feel bad I procrastinated too–I did mine on the day due!!!

  9. Baking Soda

    That’s often what happens to me, spent time to do the challenge right and forget that I need good light to take pictures!
    Well done on this challenge!

  10. mops

    Your food always come out looking not only heavenly, but beautiful! Have you ever worked in a restaurant? Your presentatins are breathtaking!

    HOW do you stay so fit? I’d be at least a thousand pounds if I had your cooking talent! :0)

  11. The Baker & The Curry Maker

    Yum, Jenny your meringe looks luscious! Sorry you had to rush around, its like that sometimes huh! Still fun tho.

  12. K & L

    Hi Jenny,
    The pie looks heavenly! Lemon Meringue has always been my fav! I can’t wait to try your recipe!
    Pilates training sounds so fun! Maybe Amy and I can take some classes from you when you are done!! Take Care!

  13. Catherine

    Absolutely gorgeous Jenny!
    Your photography is becoming so professional! Beautiful!
    So. You know, you’ll have to make that pie for my Dad, don’t you???

  14. Melanie

    I LOVE your piled-high meringue. My pie also got the clear liquid seeping under the meringue – my only guess is I didn’t cook the meringue long enough. Again, your pie looks fabulous! (Even if your boys thought it was scary!)

  15. Jenny

    Thanks everyone!
    This was a fun challenge.

    No, I don’t have to do this to enter recipe contests. It’s just something for fun. Check out the daring bakers website I listed on my post. It’s always exciting to see the new challenge for the month.

  16. Linnae

    Jenny how does the daring baker’s challenge work? Do you have to take these challenges in order to enter cook offs and bake offs?

  17. Emiline

    I’ve read several lemon meringue pie posts, but I was really wondering what you would do with yours.
    I remember last months, buche, and you did a great job. It was really beautiful.
    I like your meringue, and how you piped it on.

  18. Deborah

    I always say I’m not going to procrastinate, and then end up making the challenge the day before it’s due…

    Your pie does look gorgeous! That meringue looks amazing!

  19. Tracy

    I just knew your pie would be great. Your meringue looks better than mine did.

    And since you had Pilates training all weekend, you didn’t have to feel guilty about enjoying some!

    Great job on both counts!

  20. Proud Italian Cook

    Jenny,The look of your meringue was exactly what I had envisioned doing on mine, but sometimes dreams don’t come true!!(ha ha)Yours looks picture perfect!

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