Lavender and lemons compliment each other in such a beautiful way. This delicious pie is tart, sweet, floral and topped with an Italian meringue. I have made this several times in an attempt to perfect the recipe. My husband is grateful that I am a perfectionist with my recipes and that he has been able to enjoy this pie in it's many incarnations. It is a definite favorite in our house.
I have fond memories of lemon meringue pie as a child. My mom loves lemon anything and I just remember going to one restaurant in particular for the lemon meringue pie. Her enthusiasm while ordering it is probably what got me so excited about it. She had me convinced that it was the best thing ever. I loved the meringue and still do. I think it's magical how you can transform eggs and sugar in it's most basic form, into something light and fluffy and ever so delicate. Then you can hit it with some kind of heat, wether it be fire or a hot oven and transform the color and texture. The same thing can be said for meringue cookies that are baked slow and low and just dried out versions of the same basic ingredients.
Italian meringue is my favorite to use because of it's stability and lighter texture. French meringue is a raw egg and sugar mixture that should be cooked in some form. I often use this method in making cakes and soufflés and a hybrid hot sugar version of a French meringue when making meringue cookies and Pavlovas. Italian and Swiss meringue both involve cooking the mixture. For a Swiss meringue, you heat the egg whites and sugar over a bain marie (double boiler) and whisk them until the sugar is dissolved before moving them to a stand mixer. This method is the only safe way for a pregnant woman to enjoy a meringue because you can pasteurize the egg whites and make sure they are cooked to 160 degrees F. Italian meringue is made by heating the sugar with a small amount of water to dissolve it, and making a syrup that is between soft ball sugar and firm ball state on a candy thermometer. The syrup is then streamed into the egg whites that have been whipped. The hot syrup cooks the egg whites while transforming into a light and lovely meringue that is fairly stable. Italian meringue buttercream is also my favorite to use for cakes, but I have been known to use Swiss for buttercream as well.
While testing these recipes, I tried different versions. The first two photos are the three egg version with a French meringue, and the second set of photos is the four egg version of a classic lemon meringue pie topped with an Italian meringue. Both were very good but I prefer the four egg version with Italian meringue so that is what I will share with you. The process for Lavender Lemon Meringue and Classic Lemon Meringue is slightly different because of the infusion of the lavender. Both are fun to make and I think you will love them!
Click on the photos below or you can find the recipes here: Lavender Lemon Meringue Pie Classic Lemon Meringue Pie
Home cook, Mom, wife, and crafty creative, Mandy is from California and has traveled the world and lived in lots of places. She has fallen in love with Dallas, TX and calls it home.