I am reading the final book in Peter F. Hamilton’s Void Trilogy, The Evolutionary Void. Quite a book. I had trouble as usual remembering all the previous incidents and characters, his books are so vast in scope – don’t know how he can keep it straight, let alone me. Glenda Larke once discussed listing characters or making a précis of events in books. These definitely need such assistance. I’m kind of thinking I really need to do a re-read now all the books are written. As it is I have to get this one finished before I go on vacation so that it can go down the waiting list. I was lucky, I got in at the head of the list so I was the first to get the book. I still have some Cat Who CDs to finish before I go too, as you know I listen whilst I use the treadmill. The one I am listening to right now is The Cat Who Knew a Cardinal by Lillian Jackson Braun. I do enjoy these books. When you get to know all the characters who keep popping up it makes it fun and not hard work to read or listen to.
I read in one of my newsletters that there are several brands of eggs one can still obtain in the States without worrying about the recent salmonella scare. I was thinking of taking eggs with me, maybe I won’t bother. I have also thought of taking some whole wheat bread with me. Last year I couldn’t find anything in the whole wheat, whole grain breads which didn’t taste as though it had been dipped in molasses. I do not like my bread to be sweet. When we lived in North Carolina I used to eat the d’Italiano bread which isn’t sweet, unfortunately, it is also white so not really suitable for me any longer.
Hurricane season is in full swing in the Atlantic. Danielle didn’t visit the coast but it looks like Hurricane Earl will hit Nova Scotia if it misses the American coast which it appears it will. However, we have Tropical Storm Fiona following on behind and she looks headed for the NC coast on the storm tracks. This could, of course, put the kibosh on our vacation plans so please keep your fingers crossed.
There has been a lot on TV about the problem of bed bugs in the States and how they have become resistant to pesticides. This is very cheerful news when one is about to stay in a rented holiday home in the States.
One of my favourite desserts is Lemon Meringue Pie and I came across a recipe for it today. I don’t remember eating Lemon Meringue Pie for a long time. I guess, having diabetes, I shouldn’t indulge anyway, but I might.
Lemon Meringue Pie
Source: Casual Cuisines of the World - Diner
Makes one 9-inch (23-cm) pie; serves 6-8
A pastry shell filled with lemon curd goes back to European kitchens, but topping it with meringue is an American tradition dating from the 1800s. Take care to measure out all meringue ingredients in advance, because you must make it and spoon it on top of the pie while the filling is still hot. INGREDIENTS
1 prebaked pie crust
For the Filling:
1 cup sugar
6 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups water
4 large egg yolks, well beaten
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup strained fresh lemon juice
Finely grated zest of 1 large lemon
For the Meringue:
5 large egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sugar
Prepare and bake the pie crust as directed and let cool.
FOR THE FILLING: In a heavy nonaluminum saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch and salt and whisk until smooth. Stir in the water, a few drops at a time at first and then more quickly, never adding more water until the mixture is smooth. Stir in the yolks, whisking well to combine.
Place the saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon over the bottom and to the edge of the pan. Switch to a whisk occasionally to prevent lumps from forming. When the mixture reaches a boil (7-8 minutes), boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove the pan from the heat, add the butter and gradually stir in the lemon juice, only a few drops at a time at first, until incorporated and the butter is melted. Stir in the lemon zest. Pour the hot filling into the cooled pie crust, then immediately make the meringue.
FOR THE MERINGUE: Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F. In a large, clean bowl, using an electric mixer set on medium speed, beat the egg whites for a few seconds to break them up. Add the cream of tartar and salt and continue beating until they hold soft peaks, about 2 minutes. Increase the speed to high and add the sugar in a slow, steady stream, stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Continue beating until stiff peaks form, 2-3 minutes.
Spoon about one-fourth of the meringue on top of the hot filling and spread it to meet the crust. Gently place the remaining meringue in the center of the pie and, using the back of a spoon, shape and spread the meringue into peaks. Bake until the meringue is golden brown and firm to the touch, rotating a few times to promote even coloring, 12-15 minutes. Transfer to a rack and let cool completely.
Serve at room temperature. Or store, uncovered, in the refrigerator for up to 1 day. Bring to room temperature before serving.
Have a great day.