I normally make this pie with an Italian meringue since Italian meringue is much more stable and will not weep into the lemon curd. This recipe will work fine if you plan on serving the pie immediately. Also, make sure not to play with the meringue too much as you put it on the pie, otherwise it will turn grainy (it will still taste good though).
Graham Cracker Crust Ingredients
(Martha Stewart’s Recipe)
1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs (from about 10 crackers)
1/4 cup sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Lemon Cream (Pierre Herme’s recipe from Desserts by Pierre Herme)
1 cup sugar
Zest of 3 lemons
4 large eggs
3/4 cup of lemon juice (juice from 4-5 lemons)
2 sticks + 5 Tbsp of unsalted butter at room temperature
5 large egg whites at room temperature
1/2 cup of sugar
Pinch of cream of tartar
Graham Cracker Crust
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Mix the sugar with the graham cracker crumbs. Melt the butter. Mix the butter with the sugar and graham cracker crumbs. Press the mixture into a 9 inch pie plate. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 10-12 minutes. Take out of the oven and let cool.
Zest the lemons over the sugar. With you fingers, rub the lemon zest into the sugar to release the lemon flavor into the sugar. Whisk in the eggs into the sugar. Whisk in lemon juice.
Cook the mixture on a double-boiler. Whisk the mixture constantly until it starts to thicken a bit. Once it starts thickens, use an instant-read thermometer to take the temperature of the curd. Cook the curd to 180 degrees Fahrenheit. Total cooking time should be around 10 minutes.
Once the curd reaches temperature, take the lemon curd off the heat and pour it into the bowl of a food processor. Let the curd rest until it cools off to 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Once the curd reaches 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Turn on the food processor and blend the room temperature butter into the curd. Continue to blend the lemon curd with the butter until it becomes a creamy, uniform mixture.
Beat egg whites with a mixer. When the egg whites begin to foam, add the cream of tartar. Once the meringue reaches the soft peaks stage, add sugar slowly until it holds stiff peaks.
Constructing the Pie
Pour the lemon curd into the cooled graham cracker crust. Smooth the surface of the lemon curd with an offset spatula. Spoon out meringue on top of the lemon curd. Spread the meringue over the pie. Place the pie under the broiler and turn the pie until it reaches the color that you like.