I love pie!! It may very well be my favorite dessert and with all of the different varieties of pies (chocolate, fruit, cream, etc.) you can find the perfect one to compliment just about any meal. And while I love making my own pies from scratch, the truth is that I don’t do it all that often because, well, it’s a lot of work!!
Luckily, Marie Callender’s has got my back!!
Their pies let me enjoy my favorite dessert even when I am buried up to my eyes with work or volunteering or whatever. This spring is especially busy since I am chairing the PTA fundraiser auction and have been rushing to get invites printed and venues booked. After all that, I am definitely in the mood for a sweet treat and was thrilled to find a luscious Marie Callender’s Lemon Meringue Pie at my local grocery store.
Nothing says “Spring” to me like lemon!
Throughout the spring and summer months, I am a lemon fiend! I put lemon in my water, make homemade lemonade, bake up lemon chicken, and pretty much try to incorporate it into anything I can. Lemon Meringue pie is one of my favorites because – duh, LEMON – and I love the light and airy meringue on top. It’s just so light and fresh tasting.
I wanted to add a little touch to make Marie Callender’s Lemon Meringue Pie
even lemonier more lemony absolutely bursting with lemon goodness. They already have a great head start since it is made with real lemon juice – and you can totally taste it in every bite. Add that to the made-from-scratch flaky crust (which tastes better than MINE – seriously) and you have a little slice of heaven.
But, being stubborn the way I am, I decided to add a little decorative touch to the top that would also add to the lemon celebration – candied lemon peel!
and turn it into THIS…
Making candied lemon peel is surprisingly easy and is a great way to use any extra lemon peels you might have left over from adding lemon to your water or using it in another recipe. Simply separate the lemon peel from the fruit leaving the white rind attached (you aren’t just using the zest). Place the peels into clean, cold water in a sauce pan and heat until the water boils. When the water reaches a boil, drain it off and replace with more cold water. You are going to repeat this again and then a third time.
You might be tempted to skip one or two of these steps, but don’t. This is what removes the bitterness from the zest and your peels will not taste right if you skip even one of the steps.
After you have drained the peels for the third time, place them back in the sauce pan and add 2 cups of water and 2 cups of sugar. Again, bring the mixture to a boil and then turn down to allow it to simmer for 20 minutes. Drain for the last time and place lemon peels on paper towel to dry. (Some people like to toss them in granulated sugar, but I love them just a bit tart, so I leave them plain.)
Take the strips of lemon peel and twist them into a corkscrew. Place along the top of the pie for added lemon flavor and decoration. Viola!
For more fun and tasty inspiration, check out the Marie Callender’s site!