Blood Orange Meringue Pie

9/13/2019 10:11:00 PM

Blood orange meringue pie! This wintry twist on the classic lemon meringue pie is a wonderful way to celebrate the short blood orange season. We've got an all-butter flaky pastry, a creamy and sharp blood orange curd, and a thick cloud of sweet meringue. Total winter deliciousness!

Blood Orange Meringue Pie
Blood Orange Meringue Pie

So many fruits and vegetables are available year-round these days, but one thing I look forward to is the arrival of the fancy citruses in winter. I don't love the cold weather, but I've been loving the wide array of fragrant citrus fruits in the markets and supermarkets. Mandarins! Tangelos! Grapefruits! Different varieties of oranges! So gorgeous!

I participated in Prahran Market's A-Team again this month - receiving a mystery bag of seasonal ingredients with which to cook and create recipes - and I was thrilled when I discovered some lovely blood oranges in my mystery bag! I love eating blood oranges just as they are, or squeezed into a vibrantly red juice, but for this challenge I wanted to make something a little special. Enter this blood orange meringue pie!

Blood Orange Meringue Pie
Blood Orange Meringue Pie

The base is my go-to flaky pastry, Joy the Baker's all-butter buttermilk pastry, which I love for its ease and reliability, not to mention how good it tastes!

The filling is a blood orange curd - I based this off my regular lemon curd recipe, just (obviously) replacing the lemon with blood orange, and cutting down the sugar quite a bit. It's just a matter of stirring everything together in a pot over medium heat for about ten minutes until luscious and thickened. And actually, if you can't be bothered with the whole meringue pie fandango, you should totally just make the blood orange curd. It's so fragrant and delicious! I bet it would be amazing on toast or croissants.

Blood Orange Meringue Pie
Blood Orange Meringue Pie

I had a bit of a snafu with the meringue - I usually make a plain old French meringue for pavlovas or topping pies (i.e. simply whipping egg whites and sugar together until stiff), and am very comfortable with that technique. However, this time I tried a more complicated Swiss meringue, which involves cooking egg whites and sugar over a water bath until a specific temperature, then whipping until billowy and thickened. The results were okay, but the technique was a total pain - the meringue took forever to come to temperature, and I later realised that my clunky and slow analog food thermometer wasn't able to get a good reading, and I ended up overcooking the meringue, which made it a little dense and extra sweet. D'oh! I will try Swiss meringue again in future, but for this recipe I'm suggesting a nice and simple French meringue.

In the meantime, I'm on the lookout for a digital food thermometer that clips onto the side of a bowl, has a long probe, and reads the temperature quickly, if not instantly. Any recommendations?

Blood Orange Meringue Pie
Blood Orange Meringue Pie

Either way, the combo of buttery flaky pastry, sharp blood orange curd and sweet meringue is a winning one. Give it a go before the season ends!

Blood Orange Meringue Pie
Pastry recipe from Joy the Baker, all else Sarah's own

For the pastry
160 grams plain flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
115 grams cold unsalted butter
1/4 cup cold buttermilk, plus a few tablespoons extra if required
For the blood orange curd
2 large blood oranges
100 grams unsalted butter, melted
100 grams sugar
2 eggs
2 egg yolks
For the meringue
2 egg whites
125 grams caster sugar

To make the pastry, place the flour, sugar and salt in a bowl and whisk to combine. Chop or grate the cold butter into small pieces. Add to the flour and rub in with your fingertips until the mixture resembles damp sand and the butter is evenly distributed. Make a well in the centre and pour in the 1/4 cup buttermilk, stirring with a fork to combine. Once it comes together in a shaggy dough, knead together, and form into a disc. Wrap with clingfilm and refrigerate for one hour (or up to overnight).
Roll the rested pastry out into a large circle, approximately 5 millimetres thick. Line a 20cm pie dish with the pastry and trim the edges. Refrigerate for a further 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 200C. Line the pastry case with foil and fill with baking beans or dried pulses. Bake for 15 minutes, then remove the foil and baking beans and bake for a further 10 minutes. Set aside while you make the filling.
To make the blood orange curd, zest the oranges. Squeeze the orange juice into a measuring jug – you will need ½ cup (125 millilitres). Place the zest, ½ cup juice, melted butter, sugar, eggs and egg yolks into a saucepan and whisk to combine. Place over a medium heat and cook, stirring all the while, until thickened. Strain into a bowl and allow to cool.
To make the meringue, place the egg whites into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk on medium-high speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add the sugar, beating all the while, until the mixture is white and glossy and makes stiff peaks.
To assemble and bake the pie, preheat the oven to 190C. Spread the blood orange curd into the cooked pastry case. Dollop over the meringue mixture, making sure it reaches to the edges. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Allow to cool before slicing.
Makes 1 x 20 cm pie

Have you made this recipe? Leave a comment below! Tag me on Instagram @sarahcooksblog and hashtag #sarahcooksblog

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  1. Does your meringue weep at all? I find that if often does but it doesn't look like yours did at all.

    1. Occasionally I get weepy meringue, usually if it hasn't been whisked enough. In this particular case because it was a cooked meringue (sugar and egg whites over a double boiler), it definitely dissolved before baking. :)



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