Forgive me for not posting. Life gets in the way sometimes! But what happens when you get lemons? You make lemonade? Nope. You make Lemon Meringue Pie–and make them small for added cuteness.
I love making two-bite desserts, like two-bite brownies. Not only are they adorable, but they also are good for dieters and dessert lovers alike. It’s a great palate cleanser! These are super lemony!
Personally, I am a huge fan of chocolate, but lately, I’ve been craving citrus. Lemons to me are so bright, fresh, and clean–and it makes me feel like I am not in a dull, cold, miserable winter. I feel like when I zest a lemon, it’s like a free aromatherapy session; all my tension seems to fade.
This dessert is for the lemon lover in your life, and it really couldn’t be simpler to make. I make it with a mini muffin tin, store-made crust (don’t tell anyone), and fresh lemon curd. The lemon curd is so good by itself that I would double the batch and have an English tea party. 🙂 This recipe makes 24 mini bites, but you may find that they disappear sooner than you anticipate. Enjoy!
Mini Lemon Meringue Pies (makes 24 servings…in which you may consume half in one sitting).
The Lemon Curd
- 2 eggs
- 2 egg yolks (save whites for meringue)
- ½ cup sugar
- 2 tsp lemon zest (from about 2 lemons)
- 6 Tbsp lemon juice (from about 2 lemons)
- Store-Bought Pre-Made Crust (I used Pillsbury’s)–one out of the box is enough to make 24 mini pies. You can use a standard pie recipe you like too, but for this dessert, the pre-made works great!
- 2 egg whites
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- Take our crust and make sure it is thawed properly on the counter. It’ll become more pliable this way.
- Next, make the lemon curd. In a large heatproof bowl (or use a double boiler), mix eggs, yolks, sugar, lemon zest and juice.
- Set bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water and cook, stirring constantly, until mixture is thickened and custard-like, about 8 minutes. If you see any small pieces of egg, not to worry! Your mixture will be strained and those fragments will not be in the final product.
- Once you strain the mixer, it will become velvety smooth. Strain mixture with a mesh sieve or metal strainer and into a small bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for approximately an hour and a half.
- While your lemon curd is cooling in the refrigerator, take out your pie crust and spray your mini-muffin pan with cooking spray. You should also at this time pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Using a small cookie cutter/biscuit cutter (or anything you have, like the bottom of a glass, that is the size of a silver dollar), cut out 24 circles.
- Using your thumb and forefinger, stretch the circles you would like a small pizza. Place each small circle of dough in the muffin tin. Press down the center with your finger first, then press along the side. Try to make sure each cup is even.
- Once your tart shells are formed in the mini-muffin pan, put shells in the oven for 10-12 minutes until golden brown. Once finished cooking, allow the shells to cool in the mini muffin pan.
- While the tart shells are cooling, make the meringue using the leftover egg whites from previously. I find a hand mixer on high works best to get the peaks!
- To make the meringue, you will beat egg whites in a bowl until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in sugar until stiff peaks form, about another 10 minutes. Fill a pastry bag with the meringue and top filled tarts. Tip: If you do not have a pastry bag, put your filling in a plastic Ziplock bag, twist around tightly, and cut the slightest bit at the tip to simulate a pastry bag. 🙂
- Once everything is cooled, put cooled shells on an oven safe plate or pan. Fill with the lemon curd, about a teaspoon each. Next, top with the meringue, swirling around the tart and making a small indent on top.
- Lastly, broil the tarts for about 1-2 minutes–until lightly brown or golden brown. Don’t leave them in too long–you just want the meringue to get toasty! Alternatively, if you have a kitchen torch, you could individually brown the tarts.
- Eat right away or stow in the refrigerator for a cool, refreshing snack! 🙂