I was recently approached by the people at Baking Mad to see if I would like to review a recipe on their site or maybe create my own using supplies from their sponsors. I was so thrilled when a package arrived filled with baking goodies by the companies who work with the recipe repository website Baking Mad – the box was heavy from all the lovely Billington sugars, Allinson flours and Nielsen Massey extracts all wrapped up in cerise pink tissue paper, silky ribbons and a lovely little card thanking me for my support in promoting their site! From when I was a little girl, these brands were found in my family home’s larder and now they are found in my own baking cupboard. They are reliable and excellent quality – what more can you want from your baking supplies? Turning them into some sweet little lemon meringue pies may be one of the things you could want…
When it comes to Baking Mad itself, if you haven’t stopped by in some time, do hop on over and take a look. The site has been fully redesigned and significantly streamlined. It is filled with baking recipes for every occasion – from simple cupcakes to picnic ideas or even the British Queen of Baking Mary Berry herself can be found there. I decided to create a recipe myself and came up with these sweet little lemon meringue pies using the Billington’s golden caster sugar for an extra caramelly edge to the bake. I like my pastry short but not too sweet and add lemon zest to it so the whole package is lemony through and through. You can find my recipe for lemon curd here. Perhaps a little controversially, I add a little lemony cake batter which has some ground almonds in to give it a frangipane vibe and bake the pastry, curd and cake layer all in one. It works very well and makes the process very quick. You could do the whole recipe easily within an hour. The frosting sets but remains mallowy and creamy – almost like whipped cream with a caramel flavour to it – against the very sharp curd and not too sweet pastry, I think these little pies are just about perfect. If I do say so myself.
So thank you to Baking Mad for the goodies and the chance to create you a new recipe. I think these little pies would be lovely for an afternoon tea treat or even to take on a picnic whilst we still have a teensy bit of late summer weather left!
- Zest of one lemon
- 150 g plain flour
- 65 g soft butter
- 2 tbsp golden caster sugar
- 1-2 tbsp cold water
- 60 g soft butter
- 60 g golden caster sugar
- 60 g plain flour
- 2 tbsp ground almonds
- 1 small egg
- Juice of half a lemon
- 12 tsp lemon curd
- 150 g golden caster sugar
- 2 tbsp golden syrup
- 60 ml egg whites usually 2 large will do
- Pinch of salt
Make the pastry by creaming the butter and sugar with the lemon zest until fluffy. Stir in the flour, when comes together in fine clumps, dribble in just enough very cold water to bring the dough together. Pat out to a disk and chill until firm.
Roll out to 2mm thick on a lightly floured surface. Cut out rounds slightly larger than your tartlet tin holes – if using a regular muffin pan, expect to make one less cake. Also, I would butter a regular muffin pan – my fabulous NordicWare one doesn’t need it as it’s nonstick coating is simply magic!
Line the tartlet tin with pastry then place a tsp of lemon curd into each.
Beat the ingredients for the cake layer together until light and fluffy then cover the lemon curd with a tbsp of the cake batter. Try to seal in the curd so none catches when baked.
Bake at 180°C for 20-25 minutes until lightly browned and risen. Cool on a rack for ten minutes before gently unmoulding from the tin.
When cool, make the frosting. Put all the ingredients in a bowl over a pan of simmering water and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Switch to an electric hand whisk and beat for 5 minutes until very much increased in volume, thick and stiff.
Either dollop out with a spoon to give a rustic, fluffy finish to your pies or pop the frosting in a piping bag with a large star nozzle and pipe out swirls. Leave to dry and set before serving.
You can also make this in a long tart tin (mine is a Silverwood one and is 14 x 5 inches in size). You will need a little more curd and I recommend blind baking for a large tart. So line the tin, press some greaseproof to the surface of the pastry and then fill with baking beans. Bake for 15 minutes like that at 180˚C then remove the paper and beans and bake for another 7 minutes. Spread the curd over the dried out and cooked pastry case, carefully spread over the cake batter and bake for another 25-30 minutes until set. You may not need all the frosting depending on how you pipe it. I sprayed mine with bronze lustre spray and dusted with a little edible gold glitter.