This family favorite of Monica Norton's, based on a recipe from her grandmother, can be covered and refrigerated for up to 1 week. But at her house, it is usually consumed in 1 day.
Servings: 8 - 10
- For the crust
- 1 1/2 cups flour, sifted, plus more for dusting
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
- 2 tablespoons low-fat milk, plus more as needed to hold the dough together
- Small amount of melted butter (salted or unsalted)
- For the filling
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups water
- Juice from 2 large lemons (about 1/2 cup)
- 2 tablespoons salted butter
- 4 large eggs, separated
For the crust: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Have ready an 8-inch pie plate or pan. Liberally dust a work surface and rolling pin with flour.
Combine the flour, salt, shortening and milk in a large bowl, mixing until it comes together; add milk if needed, then use your hands to shape the dough into a ball. Transfer to the work surface and roll the dough into a flat circle roughly 11 inches in diameter. Carefully lift into the pie plate or pan, allowing the edges to hang over slightly. Use a fork to press the edges along the rim of the pie plate or pan, then brush the pie dough edges with the melted butter. Bake for about 10 minutes, until slightly browned. Let cool for 5 minutes before adding the filling.
For the filling: Keep the oven at 350 degrees.
Combine all but 5 tablespoons of the sugar with the flour, cornstarch, salt, water, lemon juice and butter in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring frequently. The mixture will thicken as it boils.
Use a whisk to lightly beat the egg yolks. Whisk in small amounts of the hot mixture to temper them; then, stirring constantly, gradually add the yolks to the saucepan. Cook for 5 to 10 minutes; the mixture should be thick. Spoon it into the baked pie crust, spreading it in an even layer.
Beat the egg whites in the large bowl of a stand mixer or a hand-held electric mixer on high speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add the remaining 5 tablespoons of the sugar and beat for 1 to 2 minutes until stiff, glossy peaks form. Cover the top of the pie completely with the meringue, spreading it to seal at the edges and using a spatula to create decorative peaks and swirls. Bake for 10 minutes, until the meringue is set and golden-brown in spots. Let cool before serving.
From Metro staff writer Monica Norton.
Tested by Monica Norton.
Email questions to the Food Section at firstname.lastname@example.org.