Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Citrus Meringue Pie

This is my favourite time of year; the frosty mornings, warm days and cold nights. I especially love the citrus. Nothing celebrates the season better then a Lemon and Lime Meringue Pie – and not just lemon and lime – any citrus will do! Citrus meringue pies are very versatile; you can make them early in the day for dessert that night, or even a day ahead; the zesty, tangy sweetness of them guarantees a memorable end to any meal. We have a good friend who is a celiac and so can’t have wheat; I have made gluten free pastry for him many times, but I just can’t get used to the texture of it. Last weekend I made a batch of gluten free ginger biscuits and ground them up in the food processor, added a little butter and made a gorgeous biscuit base for the pie – any biscuit would have done the job. So if you don’t like making pastry, use some biscuits, but whatever you do, try the pie – it is seriously good kai!

Kia makona, Mawera x

300g short sweet pastry or ground biscuits for a biscuit base
4 large eggs, separated 
1 cup water 
Grated zest and juice of 2 limes and 1 lemon
1 cup white sugar 
20g butter 
1/4 cup cornflour
1/2 cup caster sugar 
Icing sugar, to dust
1. Roll out pastry to 3mm thick and use to line a 24cm deep-sided tart tin. Prick the base with a fork and then chill for at least 30 minutes. If using
2. For pastry base: Heat the oven to 200°C. Line pastry case with baking paper and fill with baking beans to blind bake for 15 minutes, then remove paper and beans and return pastry case to the oven for a further five minutes to dry out. Remove to cool.
3. For biscuit base: Crush or grind 300gms of dry biscuits. Mix in 2Tblsp of melted butter, Press into tart tin and set aside.
4. Place the egg yolks, water, lemon juice and zest, sugar, butter and cornflour into a saucepan. Cook over a gentle heat for 5 to 10 minutes, stirring continuously until mixture thickens like custard. Remove to cool. Spread into cooked pastry or biscuit case.
5. Place egg whites in a bowl and beat until stiff. Add caster sugar a little at a time, beating well until thick a meringue is formed.
6. Spread meringue over custard to cover completely. Bake at 200°C for 8-10 minutes, until tips of meringue are lightly browned. Dust with icing sugar and slice to serve.

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