Lemon Meringue Pie with Blackberry Lemon Sauce


Although I would like to say my second pie of presentation week was smooth sailing after the myriad of annoyances that accompanied my Utterly Deadly Southern Pecan Pie, I have to say the stress level that accompanied my lemon meringue pie was equivalent to its partner this week. Perhaps my focus wasn’t quite on point. Perhaps I was trying to be too bold with my presentation. Musings aside, there is one lesson I learned with this pie that I will never forget…it is impossible to create a meringue by hand. Impossible. Think you can do it? Want to prove me wrong? Don’t. Honestly. It’s miserable. I spent about an hour vigorously whipping those egg whites and that sugar and that dash of cream of tartar to no avail. I stirred so much my arm was more sore the next day than it was after my lift on Friday. The best I could achieve was a marshmallowy goo that, although tasty, was still, well, goo. Even when Tala valiantly brought the electric hand mixer from home and I had beaten the goo for about 15 minutes and I had added way more sugar than the recipe called for, it remained slightly lighter, slightly tougher goo. Absent were the so-called “peaks” that were supposed to have appeared ages ago. Serves me right, I suppose, having the audacity to attempt the elegant meringue with nothing but a whisk…


Aside from the melty meringue (which firmed up a bit after baking, and really did taste terrific), the rest of the pie was wonderful. I created my own take on whole wheat graham flour (which BonAppetit.com requested) by combining whole wheat flour with graham cracker crumbs, and it did the trick just fine.


What a good-looking crust, right?!One problem–the butter that I ever-so-lovingly worked in by hand was supposed to be melted an act as the connecting agent. I was preparing to mourn yet another irreparable mistake, when David saved the day with a nifty trick. We put my concoction in a bowl over a pot of boiling water to create a makeshift double-boiler and melted the butter without burning anything in the process! It was quite the success, and the dough came together really well.



The lemon-blackberry sauce also turned out beautifully:



And one more close up for good measure:



There we go…the good stuff.

Lemon and blackberry is a stellar combination, and I owe many of the laudations my pie received to that wonderful sauce. I think the fresh blackberries really made it, despite the recipe calling for frozen. Also, I did not use fresh lemon juice because the stuff was really in demand this week, but still got lovely results with using lemon juice from the bottle and fresh lemon zest.


Lemon Meringue Pie with Blackberry Lemon Sauce

  • Prep time:
  • Cook time:
  • Total time:
  • Yield: 8-10
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Recipe type: dessert


  • 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup unbleached all purpose flour
  • 10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, melted, cooled slightly
  • 3 1/4 cups sugar
  • 8 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 2/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 16-ounce bags frozen (or fresh!) blackberries
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon peel
  • 6 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt


  1. For the crust:
  2. 1. Combine graham cracker crumbs with the 2 types of flour, 1/4 cup sugar, and 1/2 tsp finely grated lemon peel.
  3. 2. Gradually add butter, stirring until moist clumps form.
  4. 3. Press dough evenly onto bottom and sides of oiled (preferably with butter) pie plate.
  5. 4. Bake in over at 375 until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Maintain oven temp.
  6. For the filling:
  7. 1. Meanwhile, whisk 1 cup sugar and 4 tsps cornstarch in heavy medium saucepan until no lumps remain.
  8. 2. Gradually whisk in 2/3 cup lemon juice.
  9. 3. Add full eggs 1 at a time, whisking to blend well after each addition.
  10. 4. Stir in 1 tbsp finely grated lemon peel. Whisk mixture constantly over medium heat until filling thickens and boils.
  11. 5. Remove from heat; whisk to smooth if necessary.
  12. 6. Transfer filling to prepared crust. Smooth top.
  13. For the meringue:
  14. 1. Using electric mixer, beat egg whites, cream of tartar, and coarse salt in large bowl until frothy.
  15. 2. With mixer running, gradually beat in 1 cup sugar.
  16. 3. Continue beating until stiff and glossy.
  17. 4. Spread meringue over warm filling, sealing meringue to crust at edges. Using spatula, form peaks and swirls in meringue.
  18. 5. Bake pie until meringue is golden brown, about 15 minutes. Cool pie completely on rack.
  19. For Blackberry Sauce:
  20. 1. Bring frozen or fresh berries and 1 cup sugar to simmer in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring often.
  21. 2. Simmer 1 minute.
  22. 3. Stir 1 tablespoon lemon juice and 4 tsps cornstarch in small bowl until cornstarch dissolves. Add to berries and stir until thickened, about 1 minute.
  23. 4. Mix in remaining 1 tablespoon lemon juice and lemon peel.
  24. 5. Cool slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature. DO AHEAD Sauce can be made up to 3 days ahead. Cover and chill. Rewarm slightly before serving.

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