I made this colorful dessert for the Everyday Photographer Workshop last April and it was DIVINE.
The thyme shortbread crust was the perfect base for the rich lemon filling.
The printable recipe is below.
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons fresh thyme
- 2 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup fresh lemon juice (about 4 lemons)
- Grated zest of 4 lemons
- 4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 8 large egg yolks, beaten
- 8 large egg whites
- 1/2 cup sugar
- Cream together butter and sugar for the crust. In a small bowl, mix together flour, cornstarch, and thyme. Add flour mixture to the butter mixture, blending until well mixed.
- Roll out the dough onto a piece of parchment paper, shaping into a log with a diameter that is 1/2-inch smaller than the jars you are using (I used 10 wide-mouth 8-ounce jars). Wrap and refrigerate dough for 2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Slice dough into 1/4-inches and place into bottom of each jar. Put the jars on a large baking sheet (2-inches apart). Bake for 10 minutes or until lightly brown. Remove from oven and set aside.
- To make the filling, mix sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a medium saucepan. Add the water, lemon juice, and zest. Bring to a boil over medium heat then stir in butter until melted. Place egg yolks in a heatproof bowl and slowly whisk in 1/2 cup of the hot lemon mixture. Whisk the yolk/lemon mixture into the full pan of egg yolks. Boil again and continue to cook over medium heat until the filling is thick (approximately 5 minutes). Spoon filling into the warm, crust-filled jars.
- To make the meringue, beat egg whites in a large bowl until foamy. Add the sugar 1 tablespoon at a time, beating well after each. Beat until stiff peaks form. Spoon the meringue over the lemon filling (use the back of the spoon to create peaks).
- Again place the jars 2 inches apart on baking sheet. Bake until golden brown (about 10 minutes). Remove from oven and let cool completely. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving. Store in refrigerator.