After binge-watching The Great British baking Show/The Great British Bake Off… I just had to get into the kitchen and bake something myself!
If you are you interested in a Technical Challenge, lift the gingham cloth and try this recipe!
Lemon Cake Pie is so yummy and unique. The top layer is spongy and the bottom layer is creamy.
The recipe has been in my family for generations; it’s easily over 100 years old. The directions are sparce, in such an endearing way. But that also means the pie does not turn out the same way every time.
Lemon Cake Pie
Line a pie pan with crust. Take butter the size of a walnut, cream with 1 cup sugar and 1 tablespoon flour. Separate 2 eggs. Beat yolks and add to dry ingredients. Add 1 cup sweet milk and stir up well. Grate the rind of a lemon, add juice of 1 lemon, stir into liquid. Lightly fold in beaten egg whites. Pour into crust and bake in a moderate oven. Bake until nicely brown on top and fluffed up.
I tried making it again this week, with a few changes send my usual procedure. The filling came out great! And it didn’t pull away from the crust. I think I’m 90% there.
Change the Proportions
Butter– butter the size of a walnut is a running family joke. What did walnuts look like a hundred years ago? I usually add a little over a tablespoon. This time I added closer to 3 tablespoons.
Salt– I added a pinch of salt. Because I always add a little salt to my sweet things.
Flour– I added more flour so the bottom layer would set/not ooze to much. Instead of 1 tbsp I added three. Next time I might try two. I have definitely eaten this pie with a spoon before when the filling didn’t set.
Change the order
Mix Sugar and lemon zest – zest a lemon into a medium non-reactive bowl. Combine with the sugar. Set aside. This lets the oils from the lemon zest combined with the sugar.
Juice the zested lemon into a small bowl.
Melt the butter– I microwaved butter until just melted, and stirred it in by hand to be sugar/zest. I saw this tip on another blog, and the results look the same as when I try creaming in the past. It’s such a small amount of butter that I don’t think it effects the rise of the pie.
Separate the eggs – separate the egg whites into a mixing bowl, and the yolks into a Pyrex measuring cup.
Add milk to the Pyrex cup, up to the one cup mark plus an extra glug to make up for the space of the egg yolks. Wisk to combine (a fork works just fine).
In another small bowl, combine flour and a healthy pinch of salt.
Alternate add adding milk/egg, flour, & lemon juice to the sugar mixture. Just a bit of each at a time, so juice doesn’t curdle the milk. Last audition should be flour. (This is just a technique I use in cake baking, I don’t actually 100% know if it matters)
Wisk whites to soft peaks– in the past, I’ve whisked to stiff peaks. And the resulting batter ended up pretty lumpy. I was also whisking by hand this time, so I was fine of just getting to the soft peak stage. Gently food the egg whites into the filling.
This is the place that needs a little work.
Crust– I use a standard Crisco pie crust. Pay attention to what your doing, I rushed this time and am pretty sure I left out the salt. Oops.
My pie plate is a glass 9.5″ in Pyrex plate. This may be too big, I always seem to have a gap between the top of the filling in the top of the crust. But at least it doesn’t spill over.
At the suggestion of another blog, I put a cookie sheet under the pie plate. I thought this would help the bottom crust cook, but it did not.
Next time I want to try using a metal pie tin and see if that helps the crust bake better. Because nobody wants a soggy bottom!
Upped the temperature– I’ve always baked at 350° for a moderate oven, this time I tried 375°. Unfortunately, I think the cookie sheet affected the air circulation. It took longer than expected to get a brown top. BUT the feeling set up just right! And no burnt spots!
So here’s my most recent interpretation… If you are adventurous and want to try this recipe, I’d love to hear how it turns out!
This recipe had been in my family for 5+ generations!
- 1 cup Sugar
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 2-3 Tbls butter
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 2-3 Tbls Flour
- Pinch of salt
- 2 eggs sperated
Preheat oven to 375°
Combine lemon zest and sugar. Add melted butter.
Combine flour and salt.
Whisk together egg yolks and milk.
Gradually add flour mixture, milk mixture, and lemon juice to the sugar mixture.
Whisk egg whites until soft peaks form. Gently fold into the lemon mixture.
Pour to an unbaked pie shell.
Bake for about 40 to 45 minutes, until top is golden brown.
Cool completely on a wire rack, about one and a half to two hours. The pie will set as it cools.