If Life Hands You Lemons, Make A Pie!

Knee deep in October here, trips back home, Packer games, School Pictures, Parties, Parties, Parties and of course Trick or Treat looming ahead, but there is always time for pie.

Well, okay, I actually made this a few weeks ago. Can’t remember the exact date, but it’s a good thing I didn’t wait any longer because; (not sure if a semi colon really belongs there, but what the hay…)

1. I really wouldn’t have had any time


2. It has rained like crazy and been all sticky humid, which I think is bad for meringue.

Or maybe I just made that up, not sure.

You have to start with an empty crust and bake it prior to filling with deliciously sweet tart lemon yumminess.

I didn’t have any pie weights to prebake the crust, so I Macgyvered one and forged ahead.

Cause who really has pie weights?

This is what you are going to need for the guts.

I really wanted to insert a gratuitous picture of my favorite kitchen implement EVAH, but something is wrong and I can’t get the photo of the juice-o-mat to load. And you know how I holy love my juice o mat. Seriously. You need anything  juiced?

Bring it.

You are going to bring your sugar and water to a boil to start.

OH! Guess what? I bought the happiest new red sauce pan at the thrift store. Can’t wait to show you on Thrift Share Monday!

You need 3 bowls, because you have to separate eggs, and whisk cornstarch into water and do all sorts of  bowl needing activities.

Don’t you love how that one bowl is almost invisible? Like Wonder Woman’s jet?

Ok. Pay attention. You need to slowly add the corstarch and whisk, whisk, whisk the whole time so you do not end up with gelatinous balls of goop in your pie.

Lumps are bad.

Add the cornstarch paste to your boiling sugar and……..


I love how this stuff looks!

Reminds me of being in Day Camp when we made epoxy necklaces out of baby food jar caps and dead leaves.


Egg yolks and lemon juice are ready to go in.

You could add a drop of yellow food color if you want to, but not really necessary unless you like an artificial day-glo yellow kind of pie.

Add the butter and lemon rind here. I totally skipped the rind because I am one of those lazy variety type of humans who did not wish to waste knuckles or time grating the lemons.

Now go ahead and stick this in the fridge until it is lukewarm or while you beat the egg whites for the rest of your life.

Whichever comes first.

Love my action shots.

Not there yet.

Getting closer.

Work it.

Work it.

Own it.

Good enough.

Some of it gets mixed into the guts.

This right here? This is delicious. You are going to want to go ahead and eat a large spoonful.

Spread it into your slightly burnt crust.

Make sure when you are spreading the meringue that it completely covers the surface and touches the crust all around. You really want a good seal, or it will separate from the top of the pie and then moisture seeps in and it sucks.

Pop it into the oven for 15 minutes until the top of the meringue starts to look like a campfire marshmallow.

Super not fair, cause now you have to wait an hour to cut into it.

It was a long hour.

But completely worth it.

So that’s it folks! And I know everyone is all about pumpkins and spice this month, but if you are looking for an alternative, this is amazing stuff!
Ok. Gotta go.

School Carnival tonight, baby shower tomorrow, Museum Festival tomorrow night, church on Sunday, then another baby shower, Packers/Vikings game Sunday night.


It’s the new December.



1 (9 inch) pie crust, baked
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/3 cup water
4 eggs, separated
1/2 cup lemon juice
2 teaspoons lemon zest
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup white sugar

Preheat oven to 325

Combine 1 1/2 cups sugar, salt, and 1 1/2 cups water in a heavy saucepan. Place over high heat and bring to a boil. In a small bowl, mix cornstarch and 1/3 cup water to make a smooth paste. Gradually whisk into boiling sugar mixture. Boil mixture until thick and clear, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.

In a small bowl, whisk together egg yolks and lemon juice. Gradually whisk egg yolk mixture into hot sugar mixture. Return pan to heat and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in grated lemon rind and butter or margarine. Place mixture in refrigerator until it is just lukewarm.

In a large glass or metal bowl, combine egg whites and salt. Whip until foamy. Gradually add 1/2 cup sugar while continuing to whip. Beat until whites form stiff peaks. Stir about 3/4 cup of meringue into lukewarm filling. Spoon filling into baked pastry shell. Cover pie with remaining meringue.

Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes, until meringue is slightly brown. Cool on a rack at for at least 1 hour before cutting.


About Janice

I am 40 years old. Loving life and (finally) being a grown up. I have 3 great kids that sometimes make me want to drink copious amounts of wine. I have been married to my amazing husband since 2001. I have more great girlfriends than you can shake the proverbial stick at. Join me in this adventure that is my life.
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4 Responses to If Life Hands You Lemons, Make A Pie!

  1. Sister Cindy says:

    Better than Auntie Helens!!

  2. Kristin says:

    OMG, that sounds and looks absolutely wonderful!

  3. Del Owen says:

    This is my first visit to your blog via Apron Thrift Girl. I’m so loving your sense of humor as well as your recipes and thrift finds. I’m definitely going to try your lemon meringue pie as well as many others. Ok, going to peruse more of your blog.


    BTW, my mom uses rice on an empty butter/margarine wrapper laid on the pie crust to be baked and it works wonderfully. She always kept these items in a plastic bag on top of her jar of rice.

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