When life gives you lemons, make lemon pie! These days my Meyer lemon tree is studded with fruit so what better time to make lemon pie. I love Meyer lemons not only because they have a delicate sweetness, but they are also very fragrant and so juicy. A light lemon pie is so perfect for spring time.
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Making the Pie
Making the pie starts with the shortbread crust. The shortbread crust dough is made by combining flour, butter, powdered sugar and water. I will share with you some useful tricks that I do for making the crust. First, to be able to transfer the dough easily to the tart pan, it is important to roll it on a parchment paper sprinkled with some flour. Roll it to a size that will fit a 9 1/2 inch tart pan with a removable bottom. You will find that after rolling the dough on the floured parchment paper, it will be easier to just pick up the parchment paper on both ends, hold the bottom and invert it directly on top of the tart pan. Carefully press the dough to the bottom and sides of the tart pan. Another way to do this is by rolling the dough around the rolling pin and slowly releasing it into the pan. Then, if you want the edges level and clean, roll the rolling pin on top of the edges of the tart pan. It will trim off any excess dough.
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For the filling I decided to use creamy coconut milk for a tropical flavor. I mix lemon juice, lemon zest, eggs, coconut milk, sugar, baking powder and a bit of flour to thicken it. I like coconut so I thought why not?
After the pie bakes, it needs to cool completely for 2 hours otherwise the pie will stick to the tart pan. For this reason, don’t be tempted to cut the pie before it has cooled! Cooling completely also allows the filling to set. All it needs at the end is a dusting of powdered sugar and top it with a few gratings of lemon zest.
Meyer Lemon Coconut Pie with Shortbread Crust
A luscious pie for spring baking.....mmmmm. Meyer lemon coconut pie with a sweet shortbread crust
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. For the crust: Mix flour and 2 tablespoons of powdered sugar in a bowl. Cut in butter with a pastry knife until it forms a coarse meal. Add water and continue to mix it in until dough comes together when you pinch it with your fingers. Roll out the dough in a floured piece of parchment paper to a size that will fit a 9 1/2 inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Brush off excess flour from the dough. Transfer dough into the tart pan by holding parchment paper in the the bottom and inverting it into the pan. Press dough carefully into the bottom and up the sides of the tart pan. Prick the bottom of the dough with a fork.
Cover the tart pan with aluminum foil big enough to cover the edges. Fill up the pan with dry beans. Bake the crust in the oven for 15 minutes. When ready, remove foil and beans and set crust aside.
For the filling: In a bowl, beat together lemon juice, lemon zest, sugar, coconut milk, and eggs until smooth about 1 minute. In a separate small bowl mix together 3 tablespoon flour and baking powder. Add baking powder and flour mixture to the egg mixture and beat together until smooth.
Pour filling over baked crust. Bake it in the oven for 45-50 minutes until set. (You will see light brown color on top when it's ready).
After pie bakes, dust it lightly with powdered sugar. Let pie cool completely in a rack for 2 hours before cutting. Top it with grated lemon zest.