I made a fancy dessert for this Sabbath. It took me 4 hours and was a bust! No, I will not try again. Let me tell you the full story.
There was a dessert I had seen in a library book years ago that caught my eye – a Raspberry Lemon Merengue Pie. I’ve never made a merengue pie before, but almost nothing went right. Even the crust, which seemed easiest:
2/3 cup cold unsalted butter, diced
2 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup confectioner sugar
1 organic egg, beaten
1/2 Tablespoon cold water
1. That wasn’t enough water for my dough to stick.
2. She doesn’t tell you what size pan you need.
3. She doesn’t really clarify much about what the dough should look like before it rests in the fridge for those 30 minutes.
After the dough sat in the pan in the freezer (for an undetermined amount of time), you were supposed to bake it until it was lightly golden (about 10 minutes). That turned out fine. The taste was similar to a combination between my mom’s homemade pie crust and roll out cookie dough.
The lemon curd was the next step:
1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup unsalted butter
3 Tablespoons cornstarch
2 organic eggs
2 organic egg yolks
This didn’t go too badly, but again, she doesn’t specify how much this makes. Unless you count: “Makes 1 Small Jar”. WHAT.
Now that the curd has been cooked and is cooling, it was time to make the raspberry meringue:
3 organic egg whites
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 1/3 cups sugar
3/4 cup fresh raspberries
Are you ready for our sugar math problem? First, we’re to add egg whites, lemon juice, and 2/3 cup sugar and beat them until you have stiff peaks. This failed for me. It took 40 minutes of beating, but I finally got close. Then I was to fold in another 2/3 cup sugar. Wait. 2/3 + 2/3 = 1 1/3. Okay. Good. Then the recipe says to mix the raspberries with the REMAINING SUGAR before adding them in batches to the merengue. Huh? So, more sugar. By the time all this gets together, I can’t for the life of me get the merengue the proper consistency. I gave up after another 50 minutes or so of beating. Close enough. I poor the mix over the curd that is on the crust. Into the oven it goes for “5 minutes or until the merengue starts to golden”. 20 minutes later and that was barely happening. I pulled it out. When we served it the next day, it was more liquified than pudding.
NAILED IT (epic fail),