Nadiya Hussain's Orange and Lemongrass Meringue Pie
Meringue pie is a classic, especially the familiar lemon variety. But it’s also a recipe where there are so many variations possible and this is just one of countless ways to mix it up. Instead of biscuit or pastry I’ve made the base with sweet crisp cereal and instead of lemon curd I’ve gone for orange and lemongrass. The only bit that hasn’t changed is the top, as I think meringue needs no improvement.
|For the base:|
|250g||sugar-frosted cornflake cereal|
|125g||unsalted butter, melted|
|For the filling:|
|2||large oranges, juice and zest (you will need 200ml juice)|
|4||sticks of lemongrass|
|6||large egg yolks|
|For the meringue:|
|4||large egg whites|
|½ tsp||cream of tartar|
You will need: a 23cm loose-bottomed tin and a stand mixer with the whisk attachment.
Prep time: 30 minutes, plus chilling. Cook time: 10 minutes.
Line the base of a 23cm loose-bottomed tin with a circle of baking parchment.
Pop the frosted flakes into a food processor and blitz to a fine crumb. Add the melted butter and whizz till you have a mixture that resembles wet, clumpy sand. Tip it out into the tin and, using the back of a spoon, cover the base and sides, making sure to pack it all in really tightly. Pop into the fridge to chill and set.
Now for the curd. Add the orange juice and zest to a non-stick pan. Bash the lemongrass to release all the flavours, chop into little pieces and add to the pan.
Add the cornflour, sugar and egg yolks and stir everything together. It will be lumpy and not look great at this point, but pop it onto the hob on the lowest heat and mix till you have a smooth curd that coats the back of a spoon.
Take off the heat and push through a sieve, to remove lumps and extract more of that lemongrass flavour. Leave to cool completely. As soon as it is cool, add to the crispy tart base, level off and pop into the fridge.
For the meringue, put the egg whites and cream of tartar into the bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment.
Mix the sugar and water in a medium saucepan. Heat gently until the sugar has dissolved, then bubble until the syrup reaches 110°C. When that happens, start beating the egg whites in the stand mixer until they reach stiff peaks. Once the syrup reaches 118°C, pour the syrup slowly onto the egg whites with the motor still running at a slow speed.
Once the syrup is mixed in, increase the speed to medium−high and beat for another 3–5 minutes until thick and shiny.
Take the tart shell out of the tin and put on a serving dish. Dollop peaks of meringue onto the curd. The more swirls you have the more beautiful it will look. Grill the top for just long enough to toast or use a blowtorch to colour the meringue.