Monday, April 6, 2015

Buttermilk Lemon Pie and Other Spring Thing

 Happy Spring, folks!  I know, I'm a little bit late--but what else would you expect from me?  It's been quite a while since I've posted a recipe--so I think it's time!  This Buttermilk Lemon Pie from a long ago issue of Taste of Home is a real favorite around here.  It's pretty and yummy and springy.

You'll need some fresh lemons for this one.  I suppose it's possible to use bottled lemon juice--but the zest is really necessary and if you're buying lemons for zesting, you may as well be juicing them as well. 
 Or, in my case, having someone else do the juicing.  First off, zest and juice your lemons.  You'll need 6 tablespoons of lemon juice.  And actually, the Taste of Home recipe doesn't call for zest--but I do :)    Use approximately the zest of one lemon.

 Set aside the juice and zest and start in on your pastry.  You can use a premade frozen or refrigerated crust and really speed things up.  I happen to be born the granddaughter of a Pie Queen, so I have a go-to recipe.  This time I added a few teaspoons of lemon zest to the dough.  Roll out your dough...
 Unroll it into your pie plate,
 crimp the edges and bake.  One of these crusts ended up housing a chocolate cream pie--but I didn't take time for pictures with that recipe. 
 After your crust has finished  baking, leave it on the counter to cool and start in on your lemon filling.  In a large saucepan, combine 1 C sugar and 1/2 C flour. Gradually stir in 2 C buttermilk, zest and  1/2 C water until smooth. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly, about 4 minutes. Reduce heat; cook and stir 2 minutes longer. Remove from the heat.  You'll need three egg yolk, lightly beaten in a few minutes--but don't throw away those whites--hang onto them for the meringue. 
Temper your egg yolks before adding them to the pan.
 Bring to a gentle boil; cook and stir 2 minutes longer. Remove from the heat; stir in the lemon juice (I added probably close to 9 T instead of 6)  and 2 T butter until butter is melted. Keep warm.  I just leave the filling in the pot on top of the stove right alongside the baked pie crust while I go to work on the meringue.  

  • In a small bowl, beat the  3 egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in 6 T sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, on high just until stiff peaks form and sugar is dissolved.

  •  Pour the hot filling into pastry shell.

     Spread meringue evenly over hot filling, sealing edges to crust.  This recipe is not meant to be a real crazy high meringue.  It's taken me a few years to realize that.  The first time I made it I felt like a real failure.  And to top it off, I was having my Grandma (the Pie Queen) and Grandpa over for dinner that night for my first time as a married woman.  My Grandma informed me that her friend and just made this same pie recently and also said she was disappointed in the small amount of meringue.  We concluded that it was simply meant to be a "topping" and not a show stopper.  The real star of the show here is the creamy buttermilk-lemon filling.  Make sure you take the time to lick out the sauce pan after you pour the filling into the pie crust so that you can test out the deliciousness.
     Bake the pie at 350° for 15 minutes or until the meringue is golden brown.  You can place the pie on a cookie sheet to keep any filling from bubbling over onto the oven elements and creating a mess.
     And now this last step is important--after you remove your finished pie from the oven take a picture quickly before the meringue starts to weep.  Because it's a lot prettier without any tears on its face!  This pie cuts beautifully and tastes delicious.  It's a little bit tart and a little bit sweet and oh so creamy.  I made these pies on Pi day, ironically.  Sadly, we couldn't eat them that night because they were meant for a luncheon the next day.  If you'd like the full printale recipe it's here.
     Moving on to some other springy-things....

     Oh, I must mention that most of these pictures are coming off of a brand new camera.  A few things combined to allow me the new camera--Costco had an amazing sale, we got our rebate from Amex and my birthday happened along.  I'm really enjoying have a DSLR again.  I'm terrified of  breaking it, though.  So I'm not taking a lot of pictures with it yet.  As Henry gets older and (hopefully) less destructive I hope to use it more.  Someday I'll write a post listing all the things he's broken.  Or not :)   Good thing he looks like this.  I can't stay mad at him too long. 
     They were helping me plant some flowers out front.
     Caroline had a friend over and we enjoyed a little tea party.
     Nothing says spring quite like a bowl of bright red strawberries.

     We had another go at Royal Icing with Easter cookies.  Man is it fun.  And tasty.
     These two love going to parks.

    These donuts aren't particularly springy--but they sure were delicious.  And they were too cute not to document.  If you're like me and you prefer baked donuts over fried--make sure to buy a donut pan.  They are cheap and relatively small for storing and making donuts in them is a cinch.

     We are still very happy with the trampoline.  Nora and Henry spend a lot of time on it while the kids are at school.  I spend a lot of time on it with them.  So fun.  Quick cardio--and it makes you feel like a kid again.  Nora's even teaching me how to do a flip.  I'm pretty chicken.  She's also teaching me to do head stands.  They are a lot less scary on a trampoline than on the hard ground!  The older kids love it when they get home from school as well.  It's a great way for all of us to de-stress.
     Um, yeah, the trampoline has a net.  But it doesn't work if you are on the outside of it :)  

     We hope you are enjoying the spring season as much as we are!  And no, I did not forgot about the ultimate sign of spring--baseball!  I will have more to come on that subject later.


    Mike, Alice, and Hank the DOG said...

    Oh that pie does sound yummy! And your kids are as cute as ever! Talk about full of life. Love it!

    Adkins Family said...

    I love you guys are getting weather appropriate for Henry to be out in minimal clothing! :)