Saturday, April 23, 2011

Shaker Lemon Pie

Shaker Lemon Pie is unusual as lemon pies go. Lemon Meringue Pie, Lemon Tart, and Lemon Chiffon pie all call for just the juice or the juice and zest to be made into a curd or a fluffy filling. Then the filling is topped with meringue, whipped cream, or nothing at all. But Shaker Lemon pie is actual slices of lemon baked with egg so it forms a kind of a custard, and topped with a pastry crust. Interesting. I found two recipes for this and the one I prefer is from the Joy of Cooking (Sorry, Martha Stewart, I tried yours and liked this other one better). IMPORTANT: The lemons have to macerate in the sugar for several hours, so plan ahead.

This will make an 8 or 9 inch pie. For larger pies or for deep dish, double the recipe:

1 dough recipe for a two-crust pie (see recipe section)
2 large Lemons
2 Cups Sugar
1 tsp salt
4 well-beaten eggs

Grate the zest from the lemons. With a very sharp knife, cut the white inner peel from the lemons and then slice them into paper-thin slices. Don't worry if the slices fall apart a bit - they won't stay in neat slices when mixed with the eggs anyhow. Remove all seeds. Combine the lemon slices with the sugar and let stand 2-24 hours (the longer the better).  After letting the lemons sit several hours (or overnight) Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a pie pan with the bottom crust of the dough. Add the beaten eggs to the lemons and stir well. Pour it into the pie crust. Cover with top crust and crimp the edges. Brush the top crust with milk and sprinkle a little sugar on top. Bake at 425 for ten minutes, then reduce heat to 325 and bake 45 minutes longer. (Cover the edges with tin foil if they start browning too much). Cool pie completely before slicing.

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