Now of course you can pick up a couple of frozen shells pre-made in the freezer section of your local supermarket and save yourself some time; and I confess I have done this from time to time in a pinch!
But nothing compares to the simplicity and uniqueness of a homemade, flaky, tender, buttery pie crust.
I feel like the pear fruit is a highly under rated fruit and why I decided to feature it in my recipe for Pear and Apple Strudel
Now let me preface this entire tutorial by saying, I know my recipe for making strudel is not a true Austrian Strudel Dough which gets stretched and pulled across the entire table so thin that you can read a newspaper through it!
The coconut whipped cream is optional, but if you do choose to make it, be sure to place the can in the refrigerator the night before To make the vegan sweetened condensed milk simmer 3 cups of almond or soy milk with ½ cup of sugar for 2 hours until it is thick and about ½ cup volume I am using a 10" Tart Pan but you can make this into a pie just the same
Sure, rice krispy treats in the shape of a Dinosaur wrapped in fondant with neon lights flashing from an erupting chocolate volcano has it’s place and time; but can you make a perfect lemon meringue pie?
That my friends is the true test.
(Says the girl who cannot make a krispy treat shaped Dinosaur wrapped in fondant with neon lights flashing from an erupting chocolate volcano)
Ok I caaaaaan make one, I just don’t wannnnnnt to (*sticks tongue out)
But seriously, I get so many questions around the lemon meringue pie ~ specifically about why it weeps more than anything else.
I will have to say there is no magic trick to avoid this, in fact there is no trick at all.
The very nature of a lemon meringue pie is that is is going to weep ~ just a little bit!
I’m sorry to burst your hope filled bubble, but I have not yet found a way around this phenomenon at least not while using all natural ingredients like I do in my recipes here at Gretchen’s Bakery.
Sure there was a time many many years ago in a land far far away when I owned a bakery and I used a commercial product for meringue that was super shelf stable (meaning it lasted for days in my display case and/or on your counter top at home~ a bakery retailer’s dream come true!)
But the taste was that of a heavily processed commercial product for meringue that was super shelf stable.
Here I am using real eggs for the custard, real egg whites for the meringue and well….. don’t cry over meringue pie but unfortunately those things weep a bit.
I suppose I do have some tips for making a perfect lemon meringue pie however I don’t feel like they are tricks at all.
It is just the “right way” to do it, and if you do it this way you will have a deliciously lemony, light and airy meringue pie with a flaky pie crust (don’t forget the flaky pie crust!)
The custard is exactly like making a pastry cream, only this is a lemon pastry cream made with water & juice rather than milk.
The thickener is cornstarch which not only thickens for a perfectly “cut-able” custard but also helps to prevent some of that leakage (but again ~ note that it does not eliminate it completely)
The next part is to decide whether you want to make a more stable (and possibly less leaky?) swiss or italian meringue versus the traditional cold preparation meringue (which is what I am using here)