I apologize I’ve been MIA from the blog. I must admit, I haven’t been in the mood to cook lately because of the hot weather. This week we’ve hit temperatures of 95 degrees… and it’s not even summer yet according to the calendar. Yuck.
So, lately I’ve been reading (read 7 books last month while Sam was gone), exercising and biking, and gardening. And I have over a dozen mosquito bites to show for it. Here are some pictures of our blooming garden on the deck…. Unfortunately, everything has to be in pots because of the field mice we have running around the garden. They’ll eat anything and everything. But I do love the feeling of being surrounded by a garden, even in pots.
A small project I was experimenting on is propagation of herbs and my cherry tomato plant by stem cuttings. Basically I’m cutting the tops of my plants by the base of a node and trying to regrow roots and reproduce the plant. I don’t have much of a green thumb, but I’m willing to try it. Plus if this works it will save money on having to buy basil each year. They grow too big to bring indoors and they cannot survive temperatures of 30 degrees or less. I’ve just cut the stems this past Thursday and the plants are still doing very well. I will post about the progress and outcome of this project at a later time since it is still ongoing.
Also, Sam’s built me a bird feeder because the one we originally had is covered in foliage and trees. I wanted it big enough to make it dove friendly. He still has to attach some perches to the sides for easier landing and perching for the birds. It is a good bird feeder but not exactly what I had in mind. I may challenge him and make another design of a bird feeder. We shall see which feeder has more birds visiting.
Sam and I were invited over to my co-worker’s house for dinner and game night. I am starting to be well known for my desserts, so he requested for me to bring one. The only restriction he gave me was no chocolate because his wife is not a fan of it. Bummer… But this gives me the opportunity to make something outside of my comfort zone. I was thinking of something along the lines with lemon in it because it’s a nice refreshing flavor especially with this early summer heat. My co-worker told me that a guest was already bringing cupcakes, so that also limited me to no cake. When you think of something with lemon in it what comes to mind first? Lemon pound cake? Lemon poppy seed cake? Lemon pie? And then lemon meringue pie!! I love lemon pies with the sweet and tart lemon curd filling. So I started a search for a recipe and came across lemon meringue ice cream pie with a toasted pecan crust from Epicurious. Lemon and ice cream, what can be more refreshing than that?! I read the reviews and everyone who has made it seem extremely satisfied with the recipe. A warning though, this recipe does require some time to make due to chilling time, but everything can be made ahead of time.
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
6 tbsp (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
6 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 tsp finely grated lemon peel
pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups finely chopped pecans
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted
3 cups vanilla ice cream, slightly softened, divided
4 large egg whites, room temperature
pinch of cream of tartar
6 tbsp sugar
For lemon curd:
Whisk eggs and egg yolks in medium bowl. Melt butter in medium metal bowl set over large saucepan of simmering water. Whisk in sugar, lemon juice, lemon peel, and salt; gradually whisk in egg mixture. Whisk until thick and thermometer inserted into curd registers 178° F to 180° F, about 8 minutes. Transfer to small bowl. Press plastic wrap on top of curd; chill 4 hours. Do Ahead – Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep chilled.
Preheat oven to 400° F. Mix pecans, sugar, and butter in medium bowl until moistened. Press pecan mixture onto bottom and up sides of 9-inch-diameter glass pie dish (mixture will be crumbly). Bake until crust is lightly toasted, about 12 minutes (crust will slip down sides of dish). Use back of spoon to press crust back into place. Cool crust on rack. Freeze crust for 30 minutes.
Dollop 1 1/2 cups of ice cream over crust; spread into even layer. Spread lemon curd over ice cream; freeze until firm, about 2 hours. Dollop 1 1/2 cups softened ice cream over lemon curd; spread into even layer. Cover and freeze until firm, about 2 hours.
Using electric mixer, beat egg whites in medium bowl until frothy. Beat in cream of tartar. With mixer running, gradually add sugar. Beat until stiff peaks form. Spoon meringue over pie, spreading to seal at edges and swirling decoratively. Do Ahead – Can be made 1 day ahead. Freeze pie.
Using a kitchen butane torch, toast meringue until golden in spots or place pie in a preheated 500° F oven until meringue is golden in spots, watching to prevent burning, about 3 minutes. Cut pie into wedges; serve immediately.
Print Recipe Here!
As the reviewers on Epicurious stated, it was fantastic. Everyone loved it and took seconds home. Homemade lemon curd is worth the effort. Surprisingly it isn’t that difficult to make either. Definitely a recipe worth keeping. And a great dessert to end with after a hot scorching week. Enjoy!! =)