Gluten Free Pastry

A Classic Never Fails (Lemon Lime Meringue Pie) – except the cheat gluten free pastry base.

A perfect marriage of flavours and texture —– fluffy marshmallow like sweet meringue, soft melt in your mouth tangy lemon lime filling and crunchy nutty pastry. Well well well…it would have been perfect if I had got the pastry right. Unfortunately, I didn’t.

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So lesson learnt – Do no cheat! Yes I did cheat. I had a box of gluten free pancake mix sitting at the cupboard. And I thought the ingredients in it are more or less the same I would put into the gluten free pastry. So why not take a short cut and just put some butter, egg and water in it and turn it into short crust pastry!

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The pastry was very crumbly. I couldn’t roll it so I had to push it into the baking tin. The result was a greasy and very crumbly shortcrust base.

If I make it again. I would use these measurements:

Gluten free short crust pastry

100g ground almond
65g rice flour
60g corn meal
1 pinch salt
35g caster sugar
1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
112g cold unsalted butter (diced into cubes)
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons cold water

If you have a stand mixer, simply put all the ingredients (except the cold water) and use a paddle to mix it in low speed. When the mixture resembles breadcrumb (butter is all incorporated into the dry ingredients), then add a little bit of water at a time and use your hand to push the mixture into a dough.

If you don’t have a mixer, you can also use a food processor or you can use your finger tips to gently (and very quickly) incorporate butter into the dry ingredients.

If the butter has not melted, then you could quickly roll the pastry into 3mm thick, cover your baking tin, prick the bottom gently with a fork and put it into the fridge for 20 minutes to set.

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C and then blind bake (parchment paper over the pastry with rice or beans as weight) for around 10 minutes or until it’s lightly brown.

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Lemon & Lime Filling
22cm round baking tin

You will need:

100g lemon juice
60g lime juice
Rind from 1 lemon and 2 limes (save some for garnish)
100g caster sugar
4 eggs (lightly beaten until white and yolks are mixed together)
4 tbsp single or whipping cream

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This is how I do it:

* preheat your oven to 140 degrees

1. Mix all the ingredients together (except the rind)

2. Sieve the mixture to get a smooth filling

3. Gently mix in the rind and then pour the mixture into the pre-baked pastry

4. Bake it in the lower rack for around 15 minutes or until the lemon lime filling is set (to prevent it going to brown you may want to slide a baking tray to cover the heat)

Italian Meringue Topping

You will need:

100g egg white (room temperature)
200g caster sugar
60g water

A round 1 inch wide piping tip
A piping bag
A thermometer
A stand mixer or a hand held mixer

This is how I do it:

1. Place the egg white into the mixer (or a bowl if you use a hand held mixer)

2. Place the sugar and the water in a small pan and boil it in medium to high heat

3. Don’t mix the sugar and water mixture and let to boil until lots of bubbles can be seen.

4. Put your thermometer into the mixture and continue to boil the syrup. When it hits 110 degrees c, start whisking the egg white in high speed. We want it to get to rather hard peak

5. Once the syrup hits 118 degrees c, remove from heat and slowly pour it into the egg white (turn down the speed to medium)

6. Continue to whisk the egg white until it cools down

7. Last and the fun part is to pipe the egg white onto the pie, then brown it in a 200 degree oven and then decorate with some icing sugar and lemon and lime rind

A gluten free Lemon lime meringue pie is born!

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