Saturday, 15 March 2014

Lemon Meringue Pie

Anyone who knows me well, knows that I have trouble walking past a lemon meringue pie (LMP). So here, on this page, I intend to review each LMP I have the fortune to taste.

This is not going to be frivolous blogging with a placement of  "like/dislike" against each pie segment . No, no. no. This will be handled in a much more serious manner with a well-considered, meaningful scale.

So here are the rules for scoring a LMP.

40 points for the lemon pie filling
25 points for the meringue topping
25 points for the pastry, and
10 points for any 'X' factor present.

So, some guidelines if you will.

The filling should be wholly original. (Fillings based on condensed milk will struggle to gain full marks). Points will be deducted if the taste is over-powered in some way (eg: too much condensed milk, or too tart).

The meringue should be commensurate with the over-all size of the LMP. Both the taste and the texture of the meringue will be judged.  Points will be deducted if there is too little actual meringue.

The pastry should be exactly that - pastry. Not biscuit base (biscuit base is becoming oh! so common), not crushed nuts, not some other time-saving, no-cooking short-cut. Pastry should be light and flavoursome. Points will be deducted if it is not pastry, or it is as hard as beef jerky. 

Finally, 'X' factor points may be given if there is some aspect of the LMP that exceeds expectations, or is a novel form on the traditional pie. (As an example, I once saw a LMP in a window front in The Rocks in Sydney that had a 3:1 ratio of meringue to lemon filling. The height of the pie was staggering! I was unfortunately unable to partake of this particular LMP but I can only imagine that the 'X' factor points that would have been awarded to this masterpiece would have been the full 10 points). So presentation, both in the display cabinet and on the plate, is included in this section.

Finally, only the pie will be judged; it will not be a personal attack (or even a personal endorsement) of the person who baked the pie.

So, there we have the basics of my lemon meringue pie judging. I intend to tell you where and when I sampled each piece of pie so you can enjoy the goods ones with me and avoid the bad, (or alternatively disagree with my appraisal and offer your own score).

Now, I'm off in search of pie.

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