The pickle man

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Lemon Meringue Pie

I'm southern.  And I love to cook.  But I'm a bit of an anomaly because I really don't like to cook with condensed stuff that comes out of a can.  On any given day, you are far more likely to find real mushrooms and real whipping cream in my fridge than you are to find cream of mushroom soup in my pantry (p.s., you can usually substitute some combination of the former for the latter).

I know, I'm weird.  My own mother (if she's reading) is definitely rolling her eyes by now.  She's probably blaming this on the fact that I went to Virginia for undergrad - which, in her mind, is not a Southern state.  Capital of the Confederacy?  Pshaw.

But there are a few recipes for which I am willing to make an exception to my "start from scratch" rule.  Lemon Meringue Pie is one of them.  Don't worry, there is no cream of mushroom soup in it - just sweetened, condensed milk.  And as of yet, I haven't tried to condense my own milk.

Reasons I made this pie:
- It was my uncle's birthday.  And he's pretty amazing.  So amazing I named my son after him.  This definitely merits pie.
 - It's delicious, and ready in under 20 minutes.
- Dixon loves to make lemon meringue pie.  It's in the Amelia Bedelia books.  I think he associates pies with getting out of trouble after making a big mess.
Doesn't this look like a kid who needs to know how to get out of trouble?

He loves meringue.

Oh, and it's my grandmother's recipe :)

So, first you line a pie plate with 'Nilla wafers. It's OK if you have to break some of them to make them fit.

Then you separate 3 eggs.  Put the yolks in one bowl and put the whites in the bowl of your mixer.
Put the juice of 2 lemons in with the egg yolks. (If you're even more into canned stuff, you can use 2 Tablespoons of bottled lemon juice.  That's the only way my mom made this pie).  Add a can of sweetened condensed milk.  Stir.  Pour this on top of the 'Nilla wafers.
My son said, "Look, all the little moons got covered up."

Meanwhile, start your mixer.  Whip the egg whites.  Add 5 Tablespoons of sugar.  Beat until peaks form. Then put that on top of the rest.
Then he said, "Now the moons are getting their fluffy covers.  It must be winter."  I know, he's adorable. 
Finally, bake in a 350 oven for 8-10 minutes, until the meringue is slightly brown on top.

Chill before serving... if you can wait.  I never can.  As a result, when I serve, it looks like this:
my piece

or this
my husband's piece

But my family loves me anyway.  Even if I can't serve pie. 

the baby clapped for me :)  He claps for everyone, but it still makes me feel special. 

Condensed Recipe
1 can sweetened condensed milk
Juice of 2 lemons (* or 2 Tablespoons of bottled lemon juice)
3 eggs, separated
18- 20 Nilla wafers
5 Tablespoons sugar

Preheat the oven to 350.  Line a pie plate with Nilla wafers.  In a bowl, stir together the egg yolks, condensed milk, and lemon juice. Pour this mixture over the wafers.  Beat the egg whites using an electric mixer.  Add the sugar.  Put this on top of the pie.  Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes, until lightly browned. 

1 comment:

  1. Yum! I never make pies. But I think I'll start with this one. Looks good!