Homemade Lemon Meringue Pie

I had a dinner party on Thursday with a “hurry up summer” themed menu.  BBQ salmon, strawberry and goat cheese spinach salad and… a homemade lemon meringue pie.  I’m not usually a huge fan of lemon meringue pie but I thought that maybe a homemade version would sway my opinion.  I just find that lemon meringue pie from a box tastes more like soap than pie.  This recipe did not disappoint! The fresh lemon was tart, fresh and the perfect kick off to summer BBQ season :)

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Ingredients:

  • 9 inch pie crust (baked) – you can use a pre-made crust here to save time

For the filling:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. all purpose flour
  • 3 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice (fresh is a must)
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon zest
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 4 egg yolks (beaten)

For the meringue:

  • 4 egg whites
  • 6 Tbsp. sugar

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Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

To make lemon filling:

  • In a medium saucepan, whisk together 1 cup sugar, flour, cornstarch, and salt. Stir in water, lemon juice and lemon zest.
  • Cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until mixture comes to a boil. Stir in butter. Place egg yolks in a small bowl and gradually whisk in 1/2 cup of hot sugar mixture.
  • Whisk egg yolk mixture back into remaining sugar mixture. Bring to a boil and continue to cook while stirring constantly until thick. Remove from heat. Pour filling into baked pastry shell.

To make meringue:

  • In a large glass or metal bowl, whip egg whites until foamy. Add sugar gradually, and continue to whip until stiff peaks form (do not over beat!). Spread meringue over pie, sealing the edges at the crust.
  • Bake pie in the preheated oven for approximately 10 minutes, until meringue is browned.

Enjoy!

Source: Recipe adapted from Grandma’s Lemon Meringue Pie from All Recipes

No Bake Peanut Butter Pie

So dessert really doesn’t get easier then this.  Six ingredients, 5 steps.  Not to mention the fact that it makes 2 pies! I usually serve one of the pies and then freeze the other one for a later date.  I usually top these babies with crushed up Reece’s Peanut Butter Cups.  Reece’s Pieces and chocolate drizzle would be good too! To save yourself extra time, just buy pre-made graham cracker crusts… they are just as delicious as the homemade ones without the work.  You can also buy them in chocolate if you want.

DSC_0484Ingredients:

  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 (16 ounce) package frozen whipped topping, thawed
  • 2 (9 inch) prepared graham cracker crusts
  • Chopped Reece’s Peanut Butter Cups

Directions:

  • Beat together cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar.
  • Mix in peanut butter and milk.
  • Beat until smooth.
  • Fold in whipped topping.
  • Spoon into two 9 inch graham cracker pie shells; cover, and freeze until firm.

Enjoy!

Source: Recipe adapted from the No Bake Peanut Butter Pie recipe from All Recipes

Ginger Peach and Raspberry Pie

I’m really trying to start cooking/baking with fruits and veggies that are in season as much as possible so that I have more of an opportunity to buy my produce locally.  Kingston has a great farmer’s market and I love walking down to Market Square with my grocery bags to see what I might find.  I love August because sweet corn is in season, but so are PEACHES! I bought two big bags of them last week and have been eaten them on everything ever since.  Last weekend we went to visit our friends Willie and Melissa to see their brand new house.  I figured I would whip up a homemade peach and raspberry pie to give as a little housewarming gift.  I couldn’t eat any of it of course but there is just something about the smell of pie baking in the oven that makes me very, very happy! I will likely attempt a gluten free pie crust in the near future but for this pie I just went with my favorite stand by… evil gluten and all.  I also learned just last week the art of peeling peaches.  I never knew it could be so easy! For those of you who are also new to this technique, here is what you do:

Score an “x” on the bottom of the ripened peaches

Place peaches in bowling water for 45 seconds to 1 minute

Immediately transfer peaches to a bowl of ice cold water and let soak for about 1 minute.  You can then remove the peaches from the bowl, pat dry and peel the skin off super easily!

As I mentioned before, I went with my standard crust recipe for this pie, but I played around a little bit with the filling.  This pie got rave reviews from Josh and our friends! Here is the recipe:

Ingredients

  • 1 recipe for a double crust pastry (or store bought)
  • 4 cups fresh peaches, peeled, pitted and sliced about 1/4 inch thick
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries, rinsed
  • 1 tsp. lemon zest
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. dried ginger
  • 1/4 cup quick oats


Directions

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • Toss filling ingredients together in a large bowl until just combined.  Pour into prepared crust and either create a lattice top (more to follow on this later) or cover with remaining crust.
  • Place pie on a cookie sheet (to prevent spillage) and back for 50-60 minutes or until crust is brown and pie is bubbling.

Enjoy!

Triple Berry Pie

What an amazing weekend! Josh and I were able to spend some time up at my parent’s cottage and then head off to Montreal for the most beautiful, elegant wedding I have attended in a long time.  Congrats Ian and Shannon Swanson! These two newlyweds are serious foodies so it is of course only right that I mention them here on my blog.  I was particularly impressed with their wedding favours which were little mini books with a collection of some of their favourite recipes.  The mint chocolate brownies looked particularly amazing and will likely make it into their own post in the near future!

Now things have been a little crazy lately for no reason in particular so I didn’t get around to much baking and thus not a whole lot of posting over the last week and a bit.  That being said, my Uncle Doug asked me a few months back to make a berry pie for our next visit to the cottage.  I was at the grocery store on Thursday and berries were ridiculously cheap so I decided to whip up a triple berry pie: blueberries, blackberries and strawberries.  Wow.  This pie was CRAZY GOOD.  Needless to say it got inhaled pretty quickly and my entire family is hooked! I also found out this weekend that there are tons of raspberry bushes up near the cottage so I can’t wait to attempt some more pies with some super fresh berries. Mmmm…


Ingredients

  • 1 recipe for 2 round pie crusts, or 2 frozen and then thawed (I’d give you my recipe but its a secret from my friend Jenny’s grandma!)
  • 2 cups Blueberries, rinsed
  • 2 cups Strawberries, rinsed and roughly chopped
  • 2 cups Blackberries, rinsed
  • 3/4 cups sugar, plus some for sprinkling top
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract or vanilla paste
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  • In a large bowl, combine the blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, sugar, lemon zest, cinnamon and ginger. Stir until well combined.
  • In a small bowl, mix flour and cornstarch with approx. 4 Tbsp. water or until a medium thick paste is formed.  Stir paste into berry mixture until well combined.
  • Pour fruit mixture into an unbaked, 9 inch pie shell.
  • Cut a hole using a cookie cutter into the second pie shell and place over top of the pie, cutting away any excess pieces so that the second pie crust is the same size and fits directly over the first (you can also make a lattice top for this pie but I didn’t have enough time)
  • Crimp the edge of your pie and sprinkle with sugar.
  • Bake for at 425 degrees for 15 minutes.  Remove pie from the oven and cover the edges of the pie with foil to avoid burning.  Reduce temperature to 375 and bake for an additional 30-45 minutes or until pie is golden brown and the filling is bubbling (NOTE: this pie was super messy! I put the whole pie plate an a cookie sheet to avoid any major spillage).

Enjoy!

Source: Recipe adapted Blueberry Strawberry Pie from My Life as a Reluctant Housewife