Monday, January 28, 2008

What's your secret?

Since joining the Daring Bakers 3 months ago, I have been challenged every month. This month was no exception. When I told hubby that the recipe for this month was a lemon meringue pie, his first response was "Oh my Mom makes a great lemon meringue pie." Oh great! I have to compete with his mother.
Since we met, I have done a good job to not try to out-do her in any of his favorites. It's just easier for everyone if he doesn't have to choose me over her. His all time favorite dessert is blueberry pie and he loves mine, but I usually use a store-bought pie crust. This provides him with an easy out for why he likes his mom's blueberry pie better since she makes her crusts. Well there will be no excuse with this pie. I'll be making everything from scratch, the same way she does it (although with a different recipe). Talk about pressure...

Throughout the month, I've been trying to figure out when to make this pie. Hubby and I don't need to eat an entire pie ourselves but with all the stories of weeping meringues and soggy crusts, I didn't want to take it to work either... (Be sure to check out all the other Daring Baker's pies) I needed an event in the evening on the weekend. Then it dawned on me. I recently joined a group who meets once a month and everyone brings food and we watch a movie. They do a theme every month. This month's theme is secret recipe. HOW PERFECT! While most people brought secret family recipes, I brought something that literally was a secret recipe. It was the best of both worlds. And since the potluck was the night before the big reveal, I figured it was ok to share the secret with a bunch of non-blogging friends. Sorry to break the rules about keeping the recipe a secret.

I decided to make cupcake sized pies to accommodate the potluck setting and the fact that I love cupcakes. Also, this way I'd be able to have one for pictures at home and not have to explain to my new acquaintances why I was taking pictures of the pie after the first piece was cut...



Now onto the baking of the cupcakes! As I mentioned, I've never made a crust before, so I didn't really know what to expect. I do have a pastry cutter, so I was excited to use it! As usual, I got all my ingredients measured and ready to go prior to starting.

My dough was very crumbly after I turned it onto my Silpat. I shaped it into a disk they best I could, but I couldn't pick it up to wrap it in plastic wrap. Instead, I just put plastic and a clean towel over the dough and put the Silpat onto a cookie sheet and stuck the whole thing in the fridge. I had to knead the dough quite a bit to be able to roll it out.
I used a prep-bowl that had a 4" edge to cut my dough. I used a sharp knife and ran it along the outside of the overturned dough to cut my circles. Then I pressed each circle into the cupcake pan. The recipe made 12 cupcake crusts.

As you can see the crust got smaller as it baked. I think it'll still turn out okay at this point. I prepped all my meringue and filling ingredients while the crust was baking (the 5 egg yolks go in the filling and the egg whites go in the meringue). I read that since you want to put the meringue onto the filling while it's hot, it might be a good idea to actually make the meringue first so that it's ready to go. So that's what I did.
The meringue came together quite well. I followed the directions for the lemon curd exactly and it came out perfectly. It held up nicely and tasted AMAZING. Perfectly tart.

I had quite a bit of the lemon curd left since I wasn't able to put very much into the cupcake pie crusts. I used an ice-cream scoop to put a big dollop of meringue on top of the filling. I made them look spikey cause it's fun :)

I am very proud to admit that my filling held up nice and sturdy even after about 6 hours. These little guys were heavenly. Everyone at the potluck asked for the recipe.


Thanks to our host Jen for this lovely recipe! I really enjoyed making my lemon meringue cup-pies. Click HERE for the complete recipe (I figure this post is long enough already!)

37 comments:

BMK said...

Those are adorable! I love the idea of lemon meringue cupcakes.

~Amber~ said...

They are adorable!! Great job and I am glad you had success with the recipe.

Shawnda said...

Congrats on a successful challenge!

slush said...

OMG, are they cute! Like little porcupines. So glad it turned out for you. Fab job!

Aparna said...

I really liked your idea of making the cupcakes. No cutting up and great single sized servings. They look just great.
Makes me wonder-- why didn't I think of that?

Tempered Woman said...

Hey~ I made lemon maringue cuppies too! I am so sold on making pies this way in the future- very fun. Love the spikies- great job.

Nikki57 said...

Your LMP looks great! I love the cuppies

CB said...

LMP cuppys rule! ::high five:: love all the pictures of your process... great job!

Marye said...

I really like the little pies everyone is making..now I want to redo mine.blessings,
marye
http://bakingdelights.com

michelle said...

Oh so cute! I had considered trying my second attempt in a cupcake tin... until I waited until the last minute, that is! :)

ruthEbabes said...

Congrats! These look fabulously divine!

Butta Buns said...

Ah ha, another fellow Boston baker! Your tarts are beautiful! Love the peaks on the meringue!

How To Eat A Cupcake said...

Those are so perfect!

PS: I have those red measuring bowls. I love them! :D

I(dot)J said...

so SMART to have all of your ingredients out FIRST. I really should know this by now.

Dolores said...

Ooooh, I love your cupcake-pies. How'd you make the meringue spikey?

And what did the husband think of the final product?

breadchick said...

your little ones are adorable. Great job on your challenge!!

MrsPresley said...

your lemon meringue cupcakes are so cute! job well done! :)

Beth G. said...

They're so cute!! Great job!! :O)

kate said...

i had that crust shrinkage problem too. it's a bummer.

----------
kate
www.thecleanplateclub.net

Jen said...

Dolores - I just spread the meringue around and then using a spatula, pressed it into the meringue and pulled it out and voila! Spikes!

Andrea said...

Your little cupcakes are adorable! That was a great idea!

Princess of the kitchen said...

Your little tarts lok just lovely. well done!

Big Boys Oven said...

a challenge executed incrediblely well!

Deborah said...

They look just perfect!!

Candace said...

Nice job!

Megan said...

Too cute! Love the cupcakes. I want one!

Carrie said...

My crust did the same thing! Your cupcakes look great though!
~Carrie from bakersbakery.wordpress.com

Lane said...

Your "pie-cups" look perfect. Great job!

Jane of VeganBits.com

Lunch Buckets said...

Very cute! Did you turn away and silently mock your husband "my mom makes a great...", no of course you wouldn't have, I must be projecting :)

Sheltie Girl said...

You did a wonderful job on your lemon meringue tarts!

Natalie @ Gluten A Go Go

~ We're lactose intolerant at our house too.

Quellia said...

Nice cupcakes! And if it makes you feel any better, I've been a DB'er for a year and friends and family, all non-bloggers, always know what I'm making. They kinda have to since I always tape the recipe up on the kitchen cupboards!

creampuff said...

Yayy! I love reading success posts like this! They look great and that's a good idea to bake them in muffin tins. Well done!

BrineS said...

I love your little lemon meringues!

Jen Yu said...

Awesome! I love how differently everyone's turned out, but these little cuties are so adorable :) Great job!!

Claire said...

So cute! I'm sure everyone enjoyed you addition to the spread!

Jigginjessica said...

I love cupcake idea. One big pie seems so messy, these seem neat and tidy. Congrats on another successful challenge!

Jelli Bean said...

The shrinking crust always affects my mini cupcake pies too. The trick is to make them overhang the cups enough so that they shrink down to just the right size. Your little pies are darling!

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