Passion fruit and lemon meringue pie

Chef: Domini Kemp
Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 120 mins
Passion fruit and lemon meringue pie
I have no idea why, but if you ask me to bake a meringue I get a bit stressed, which is ridiculous, as meringues are just so darned simple that I have no excuse. Yet I always make a dog’s dinner of them. It usually starts off with a fumbling of eggs, burst yolks and shattered shells. Then I forget how many eggs I’ve actually put into the bowl – hopeless carry-on that could be described as plain old incompetence  However, they do make a quick and tasty dessert, especially for large gatherings, which is why I’m fond of a Simon Hopkinson recipe called Angel Pies, full of lemon curd and passion fruit.
 

for the meringue:

3 egg whites

sunflower oil

a pinch of salt

1⁄4 tsp cream of tartar

125 g caster sugar, plus extra for

sprinkling

1 tsp corn flour

2 tsp white wine vinegar

for the lemon curd:

90 g unsalted butter

rind and juice of 2 lemons

125 g sugar

2 eggs, beaten

to assemble:

300 ml cream

1 tbsp caster sugar

6 to 8 passion fruit

To make the meringue base, preheat the oven to 120°C/250°F/Gas Mark 1/2. Grease a 24 cm tart tin with a removable base with a little sunflower oil.

Beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt and the cream of tartar until they form soft peaks. Add the sugar 1 tablespoon at a time while still beating until the whites are thick and glossy. Fold in the corn flour and vinegar.

Spread out the meringue in the prepared tart tin, then sprinkle with extra caster sugar and bake for 1 hour. Turn off the oven but leave the meringue in the oven for another hour. Allow it to cool in the tin.

To make the lemon curd, melt the butter in a bowl set over boiling water along with the lemon rind, juice and sugar. When they are well mixed, add the beaten eggs and mix well. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes over the simmering water, until thick, then allow to cool.

To assemble, whip the cream along with 1 tablespoon caster sugar. You can mix the whipped cream with the lemon curd or do a separate layer of cream and a separate layer of lemon curd on top of the meringue, whatever you prefer. Spoon the flesh from the passion fruit on top of the pie and serve.

Serves
6 to 8

Preparation Time
30 minutes

Cooking Time
120 minutes

Main ingredients
Fruit, Eggs

Recipe Type
Cakes & Baking, Dessert, Entertaining

Special Info
Nut free

Level of Difficulty
Medium

  • Any trace of egg yolk in the egg whites will make it impossible to stiffen the egg whites.
  • Your equipment – a metal or glass bowl and whisk or beater – must be spotlessly clean. Any trace of fat on your equipment will make it very difficult to properly stiffen the egg whites. Plastic bowls can still be a bit greasy – even if you’ve cleaned them scrupulously.
  • Use egg whites that are at room temperature because they will reach a greater volume.
  • A general rule of thumb is that older eggs are better for whisking, as they’re less gelatinous, which is a good quality when you’re poaching eggs for breakfast, but not when you’re looking for serious volume from whisking.
  • Cream of tartar helps stabilise the egg whites.

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