There are not too many people who don’t enjoy a good piece of well-prepared pie. With lemon meringue being one of the favourites when in New Zealand.

Reduced Fat Lemon Pie

Lemon meringue pie is popular dessert served in high-end restaurants to casinos but even commercial food preparers are striving to give their customers better food choices.

The key is to reduce the amount of sugar normally found in this type of pie which with one piece of this pie constitutes about 60% of the amount of sugar that should be allowed in the diet per day.

Butter can be reduced by 75% to help reduce fat.

The replacement of white flour with whole wheat takes a healthier approach.

The Recipe

  • What’s Needed for the Crust:
  • Whole wheat pastry flour – 1 ¼ cups
  • Dry Milk, non-fat – 1 tbsp.
  • Granulated Sugar – 2 tsp.
  • Salt (preferably kosher) ¼ tsp.
  • Vegetable shortening ( this should be chilled and cut into small cubes) 3 tbsps.
  • Butter, cold and unsalted ( cut into small chunks)
  • Ice water – a ¼ cup that has to be divided
  • What’s Needed for the Filling:
  • Eggs – large -2
  • Egg white – large-1
  • Sugar granulated – 1 cup
  • Cornstarch – 1/3 cup
  • Salt (preferably kosher) ¼ tsp.
  • Lemon Zest – 1 ½ tbsp.
  • Lemon Juice ½ cup
  • Butter unsalted – 2tsp.
  • What’s In the Meringue?
  • Egg whites – large – 4
  • Cream of Tartar – ¼ Tsp
  • Sugar – Powdered – 2 tbsp.

How to Prepare

The first step is to prepare the crust. In a small bowl the flour, dry milk along with the sugar and salt should be well mixed together. Next, add shortening and butter and mix everything together until the mixture comes together in small clumps. Add 2 tbsp. Of the ice water and knead the mixture together. Add additional ice water if needed to bring the mixture together but no more than an additional 2 tbsp. Turn the mixture out onto a floured baking board and knead twice. The dough should be ready to form into a ball, then covered with plastic wrap and left to chill.

Next step: Heat oven to 425 degrees F. Unwrap the dough and on a floured surface roll to an 11-inch circle to be fitted into a 9 in. Pie plate. Crimp edges of the dough and prick entire surface of dough with a fork to reduce shrinkage. Cook the pie dough for between 10 to 12 minutes and when it looks golden brown remove from oven to cool.

Cook the Filling: Mix eggs and egg whites in a bowl, then set aside. Put rest of filling ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil until it becomes thick. Takes about one minute and needs to be stirred throughout cooking. Take from heat and slowly stir in the egg mixture. Return to heat cook for one minute, remove from heat and add zest, juice and butter, then transfer mixture to crust.

Make the meringue: Eggs white must be beaten until mixture forms soft peaks. Take about 1 minute, then one minute longer for it to reach hard peaks. Spread mixture over the hot lemon pie so it touches the edge of crust. Bake at 357 degrees F for 10 mins until the meringue looks golden brown.

Let cool for a couple of hours before serving.