This lemon meringue pie is a true family favourite and was one of the first pies I ever baked. The filling is very easy to make from scratch. It gives a mixture that is both creamy and full of zingy lemon flavour to complement the sweetness of the meringue on top.
You will also need an 18cm (7 inch) round deep pie plate with rim and a baking tray/sheet.
For the pastry
Sift the flour and salt into a bowl.
Rub the fat into the flour until the mixture resembles fresh breadcrumbs. This can be done by hand or in a food processor.
Sprinkle the water evenly over the surface (if it is not sprinkled evenly it can cause blistering when the pastry is cooked). Start bringing the dough together using a pallet knife until it starts clumping. Then knead the dough until it is smooth. Pop in a plastic food bag and refrigerate to rest for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile preheat the oven to 190°C (375°F) (gas 5).
Roll out the pastry onto a floured surface to a thickness of 6mm (¼ inch) and 5cm (2 inches) larger than the pie plate.
Now cut a 1.25cm (½ inch) strip from around the edge of the pastry. Dampen the rim of the pie plate with water and then use the strip to cover the rim, pressing it down.
Next dampen the strip of pastry. Then line the pie plate with the remaining pastry, gently pressing it down into the pie plate and around the rim to make sure no air is trapped but being careful not to stretch the pastry.
Remove any excess pastry from around the edge of the rim and prick the base of the pastry with a fork.
Bake blind for 15 minutes.
Carefully remove the paper and baking beans, and return the pastry to the oven for a further 5–10 minutes until it is cooked through. Remove from the oven and set aside.
Reduce the oven temperature to 150°C (300°F) (gas 2) and place a baking tray/sheet in the oven.
For the filling
While the pastry is cooking, the filling can be prepared. Mix the cornflour with the water in a saucepan. Then stir in the zest and juice of the lemons. Bring slowly to the boil, stirring, until the mixture thickens.
Now reduce the temperature to medium and add the sugar, stirring until it has dissolved. Remove from the heat, cool the mixture for a couple of minutes.
Beat in the egg yolks. Set aside.
For the meringue
Whisk the egg whites until stiff.
Then gradually add the sugar, a tablespoon at a time, whisking well between each addition, until the mixture is stiff and glossy.
The pastry case can either be left in the pie plate or carefully removed. Place the pie plate or the pastry case only on the warmed baking tray/sheet.
Now pour the lemon filling into the pastry case and level the surface.
Pile the meringue on top, making sure it completely covers the filling. Finally pull the meringue up into peaks using the tip of a knife.
Bake in the oven for 30 minutes. The meringue will be crisp and lightly browned on the outside but still soft on the inside.
It can be served warm or cold. If it is to be served warm, let it rest for 20 minutes after taking it out of the oven before slicing into portions.
You will also need a 25.5cm (10 inch) heavy gauge aluminium frying pan/skillet.
First, melt 28g (1 oz) (2 tbsp) of butter and set aside to cool.
Sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl and make a well in the centre.
Beat the eggs in a bowl, then add the milk and cooled, melted butter. Gradually pour the mixture into the well of the flour while whisking with an electric whisk or a balloon whisk, incorporating the flour from around the edge of the bowl. Scrape any remaining flour down from around the sides of the bowl using a silicon spatula and whisk again until all the mixture is smooth. Let stand for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile preheat oven to 110°C/225°F/gas ¼, and place five plates in the oven to warm.
Melt the remaining butter and pour into a small bowl. After cooking each pancake, smear the pan with a little melted butter, using kitchen paper, to keep it lightly greased. The pan should be lightly greased not running with butter.
Get the pan really hot, then turn the heat down to a medium setting.
Use about 3 tablespoons of batter for each pancake. (It is easier to measure this into a ladle or cup first to give a guide for the amount for each pancake.) Quickly tip the batter from the ladle or cup into the centre of the pan and, at the same time, tip the pan from side to side to get the base evenly coated. Cook the pancake for about 1 minute until the surface dries and the underside is golden.
Flip the pancake over with a palette knife. Again, cook until the underside is golden which will need less time. Then slide out of the pan onto a warmed plate.
Continue until the batter is finished. Overlap the pancakes on the warmed plate as you go. Keep them warm in the oven, covered loosely with foil.
To serve, squeeze lemon juice over each pancake and generously sprinkle with sugar. It can then can be rolled up.
Marinading time: at least 30 minutes, overnight if possible
Cooking time: 10 minutes hob, 35 minutes oven
450g (1 lb) pork fillet/tenderloin
4 tbsp olive oil
4 tbsp maple syrup
3 tbsp wholegrain mustard
4 garlic cloves, crushed
salt and freshly milled black pepper
Vegetables to serve
roasted, diced potatoes and carrots
You will also need 2 small roasting pans.
For the marinaded pork
Mix together the maple syrup, mustard, garlic, oil, and seasoning. Then pour into a shallow dish.
Now add the pork and turn to coat in the marinade.
Cover the dish and refrigerate for at at least 30 minutes; overnight if possible.
For the mustard pork
Preheat the oven to 190°C (375°F) (gas 5).
Remove the pork from the fridge and leave to come up to room temperature.
Meanwhile prepare the vegetables. Parboil a few potatoes and carrots for 7 minutes. Drain and leave for a few minutes until cool enough to handle. Then chop into small chunks and put in a bowl. Toss with a glug of olive oil.
The vegetables and pork are roasted at the same time. So tip the vegetables into a small roasting pan along with the olive oil and roast for about 35 minutes until they start to brown and crisp.
Transfer the pork to the second pan and pour over the marinade. Cover with foil and roast in the oven for 25 minutes. Then remove the foil and continue roasting for a further 10 minutes, or until the pork is cooked through and the juices run clear when tested with a skewer.
Slice the pork and pour over the sticky pan juices. Serve with the roasted vegetables and accompany with peas.
An apple pie that is delicious, especially when the apples just come into season. The pie filling literally just contains apples and a little sugar so the full flavour of the apples come through. It has a sweet pastry lid that when cooked is buttery and crumbly. For a mouthwatering finish serve with cream or ice cream.
140g (5 oz) cold butter, cut into cubes (⅔ cup, or 1 stick plus 2 tbsp)
1 egg yolk
pinch of salt
For the filling
1.35kg (3 lb) Bramley apples/apples suitable for cooking
115g (4 oz ) caster/superfine sugar (½ cup + 1 tbsp) plus extra for sprinkling
1 egg white, lightly whisked
You will also need a 28 x 20cm (11 x 8 inch) deep pie dish, sides and rim buttered. Also a pie raiser, buttered.
For the pastry, sift the flour and salt into a mixing bowl and add the sugar.
Then rub in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs.
Whisk the egg yolk and 1 tablespoon of cold water together in a small jug. Gradually pour onto the flour mixture while mixing in with a palette knife until it starts to form small clumps. You may need extra water.
Quickly knead by hand to bring the mixture together. Wrap in cling film/plastic wrap and chill for 20 minutes. Roll it out fairly thinly. Upturn the dish onto the centre of the pastry and use it as a template to cut out the lid, adding an extra 2.5cm (1 inch) all the way round.
Then reroll the excess pastry and cut out a 5cm (2 inch) wide strip, enough to go round the rim of the dish. Apply this to the flat rim taking it down inside the dish. Press into place and make joins where necessary. Put the pie raiser in the middle of the dish.
For the filling, prepare the apples one at a time. Peel, cut into quarters and core. Cut each quarter into four and pile into the dish as you go, sprinkling some sugar between each layer. They should pile up high in the dish which will help to support the pastry lid.
Brush the pastry covered rim with cold water and then put on the lid. Crimp the lid and rim pressing together as you work your way round the rim.
Cut 4 slashes in the lid and return the pie to the fridge for another 30 minutes (can be left for up to 2 hours).
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 190°C (375F) (gas 5).
Remove the pie from the fridge and brush the surface with the egg white, then sprinkle with sugar.
Place in the middle of the oven and bake for 40–45 minutes until a pale golden colour.
First, prepare the pork. Remove any bone and excess fat from chops. If using fillet/tenderloin, cut into four equal pieces and then flatten each piece a little by covering the pork with cling film (plastic wrap) and bashing it with a rolling pin.
Now melt the butter in a frying pan/skillet over a medium heat. Then add the pork, and sauté for 2 minutes on each side until golden brown.
Meanwhile, spread the onions over the bottom of the ovenproof dish. Cover with the tomatoes, season, and sprinkle over the sugar.
Place the pork on top of the tomatoes.
Toss the breadcrumbs and cheese together, then sprinkle over the meat.
Cover and bake in the centre of the oven for 45 minutes.
Remove the lid and continue to bake for a further 15 minutes to brown the top.
Preparation time: 10 minutes, plus time to prepare the fruit
Cooking time: 1 hour
Standing time: 1 hour
3 egg whites
225g (8 oz) caster/superfine sugar (1⅛ cups)
½ tsp cream of tartar
1½ tsp vanilla essence
2 tsp cornflour/cornstarch
450g (1 lb) prepared fresh fruits
2–3 tbsp Cointreau (with a winter pavlova)
300ml (10 fl oz) double cream/whipping or heavy cream (1¼ cups)
For a summer pavlova
Prepare strawberries, raspberries and other seasonal fruits of your choice.
For a winter pavlova
Melon (scooped out into balls), kiwi fruit, grapes and oranges.
Preheat the oven to cool, 140°C (275°F) (gas 1).
Separate the eggs. In a clean, grease-free bowl, whisk the egg whites until just stiff.
Gradually whisk in 170g (6 oz) of the sugar, a tablespoon at a time, whisking well between each addition until the meringue is stiff and shiny.
Whisk in the cream of tartar, vanilla essence, and cornflour.
Cut a sheet of baking parchment large enough to fit a large baking sheet. Draw a 24cm (9½ inch) oval onto the paper. Dab a little meringue in each corner of the baking sheet to secure the paper and stop it moving. Then place the paper on the baking sheet with the drawn oval side down.
Spread the meringue inside the marked oval shape. Bake in the centre of the oven for 1 hour.
Turn off the heat and allow to cool in the oven with the door slightly ajar.
Meanwhile prepare fruits. Cut larger fruits into slices or segments. Cut any orange segments free from their connecting tissue with a small, sharp knife. You want to end up with all the fruits being of a similar size. Place them in a bowl as you prepare them.
Sprinkle the fruit with the remaining sugar and, if making a winter pavlova, add the Cointreau. Allow to soak for 1 hour before serving.
Carefully peel the paper off the pavlova then place it on a flat serving dish.
Whip the cream until it will hold a soft peak and then spread over the meringue.
Carefully spoon the fruit on top.
If you enjoyed this recipe, you might like to try these other pavlovas:
Sole fillets are a delicate fish and here they are cooked with a cream cheese, parsley and lemon stuffing, which adds to the flavour of the fish without overpowering it. Cooks in just 20 minutes for a delicious meal.
These buttermilk pancakes with apple and maple syrup are thicker, North American-style pancakes. The addition of the buttermilk in the pancakes and the topping of sweet dessert apples, all smothered with maple syrup, make this a delicious dessert.
Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl and mix in the sugar.
Make a well in the centre and add the buttermilk, beaten eggs, vanilla extract, and most of the milk.
Gradually whisk the flour into the wet ingredients, adding enough extra milk to make a smooth, fairly thick batter.
Set aside to stand for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile warm 6 plates in the oven.
Now peel, core and thickly slice the apples.
Melt the butter in a large frying pan/skillet and add the apple slices in a single layer. Dust with the icing/powdered sugar and cook over a medium heat for 2–3 minutes on each side until golden. Tip onto a warmed plate, cover with foil, and keep warm in the oven while cooking the pancakes.
For the pancakes, melt the butter in a large, heavy gauged frying pan (skillet). Pour into a small bowl and use this to smear the pan between cooking each pancake using a wodge of kitchen paper,
Now wipe the pan clean with kitchen paper and then turn up the heat to get the pan really hot.
Reduce the heat to medium and then grease the pan with a little of the melted butter. (It should be lightly greased, not running with butter.)
Add 3 tablespoonfuls of batter and cook for 1–2 minutes until bubbles appear on the surface of the pancake and the underside is golden. Turn and cook for a further minute. Lift out onto a warmed plate, cover loosely with foil. and pop the plate back in the oven. Repeat using the remaining batter until there are 12 pancakes.
Pile three pancakes on each plate and top with the apple slices.Pour over maple syrup and serve with a spoonful of crème fraîche.
3 eggs, large (U.K.)/extra large (N.A.), whites only
170g (6 oz) caster/superfine sugar (¾ cup + 1 tbsp)
1 tbsp coffee extract
3 tbsp hazelnuts, finely chopped (or walnuts)
For the filling
70g (2½ oz) dark chocolate, chopped
20g (¾ oz) butter (1½ tbsp)
240ml (8 fl oz) double/whipping or heavy cream (1 cup)
1 tsp cocoa powder (optional)
For the meringue
Preheat oven to a cool setting, 140°C (275°F) (gas 1).
Toast the hazelnuts by heating in a pan over a medium–low heat until just turning colour and begin to smell nutty. Watch them carefully as they can burn very quickly. Set aside to cool.
Now whisk the egg whites until stiff. Then slowly add the sugar, a spoonful at a time, whisking well between each addition. Drizzle over the coffee extract and whisk again until mixed in. The meringue should form stiff peaks and be glossy.
Carefully fold in the nuts.
Line two baking trays/sheets with parchment paper. Dab a little meringue in each corner of the trays/sheets to hold the linings in place. Then swirl small spoonfuls of meringue onto the paper. The mixture will make approximately 24 meringues (you want an even number). Do not try piping the meringue as the nuts will clog the tip!
Now bake for 1 hour 15 minutes or until the meringues are dry and lift freely from the paper. Turn off the oven and, if you have time, leave them to cool in the oven with the door slightly ajar. Otherwise transfer the trays/sheets onto wire cooling racks and leave the meringues to cool. When they are cool, remove from the paper.
For the filling
Melt the butter and chocolate in a bowl that will fit over a pan of just simmering water. The bottom of the bowl must not touch the water. Stir as it melts until the mixture is smooth. Then remove from the heat and leave to cool.
When the chocolate is cold, coat the flat surface of 12 meringues.
Now whip the cream. Use the cream to sandwich together a chocolate-coated meringue and a plain meringue.
Cocoa powder can be sifted lightly over the top of each meringue to decorate.