I don’t consider myself a food blogger, but once or twice a year I’m approached to create a recipe in collaboration with a brand. I always have to check, and then check again, that the brand in question understands what an utterly lazy cook I am.
The lazy cooking movement
Are they aware that I’m trying to spread a lazy cooking movement, using the minimum number of pots and pans?That I have never used a meal plan? Have they seen the un-beautiful, school dinner-esque creations I come up with?
Do they realise that most of my meals involve using substitutes for the ingredients I should be using, because that’s all I have in my fridge?
I don’t have any evidence, but my feeling is that this haphazard approach to making family meals, is one I share with many busy families.
If the food company knows all of this, and still wants to work with me, then I’m up for it!
Happy birthday Baxters!
Baxters is celebrating its 150 year anniversary in 2018. They were the first brand to launch a vegetarian soup in the UK and the first to put jam in a screw cap jar. Their preserves, chutneys and soups are a staple in the Maven household.
As part of its Summer of Celebration, Baxters challenged me to come up with a ‘lazy cooking’ twist on a traditional recipe, using one or more of their products.
I seldom make desserts and NEVER make pies. Until last week I didn’t even own a pie dish. I have also never made a meringue, despite my mother being the pavlova queen of NW London. This seemed like a good opportunity to come up with a simple recipe for a meringue pie.
This is no ordinary meringue pie though – this is a magnificent meringue pie.
There are two big differences to a normal lemon meringue pie. One is the obvious substitute – mango for lemon. I used Baxter’s Passion Fruit and Mango Curd: a tangy, slightly tart, delicious curd to make this family favourite a little more exotic.
The other substitute is the base. I made a biscuit base – because I’m too lazy to make pastry and I love the sweet, salty crunch of digestives mixed with butter.
Here’s the recipe.
Magnificent mango meringue pie recipe
200g crushed digestive biscuits
45g caster/demerara sugar
2 x 240 jars of Baxter’s passion fruit and mango curd
3 x egg whites
175g caster/demerara sugar
Preheat the oven to 170 degrees centigrade.
Melt the butter in a saucepan and remove from the heat. Put the digestives into a sealed freezer back and smash them into crumbs with a rolling pin. Mix together the butter, sugar and biscuit crumbs.
Smooth the mixture into a 23cm pie dish with the back of a spoon or a spatula, spreading the mixture up the sides of the dish. Leave to cool in the fridge while you make the meringue.
You need to make the meringue in a very clean bowl. Any grease or crumbs will prevent the egg whites from fluffing up and thickening.
With an electric whisk, whisk the egg whites until they thicken enough to form peaks. Add the sugar one teaspoon at a time, while whisking at full speed. This takes time but will give you the perfect fluffy meringue.
Spread the passion fruit and mango curd evenly over the cooled biscuit base. Spoon the meringue on top, spreading evenly with the back of a spoon. Swirl the surface of the meringue into peaks with a fork.
Bake in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes, until the meringue is a light golden colour. Allow to cool before serving.
The money shot
As luck would have it my in-laws were coming over for Sunday lunch. They’re aware that invitations to lunch come with a certain amount of risk. And long breaks to take photos. But the pay off is that they’ll be well fed.
The pie didn’t cut perfectly. Real life isn’t like that. But the combination of light and fluffy meringue, smooth tart filling and sweet crunchy base – was pie perfection. I served it with double cream and blueberries.
Do you have pie envy? No need – this recipe is easy peasy and doesn’t take long to make. Please give it a try and let me know how you get on.
Much love, Vx
[Disclosure: sponsored by Baxters]