This is the perfect finish to dinner on a very warm, summer evening! I am in love with anything lemon but the other part of this dessert that is absolutely delicious is the toasted pecan crust. What a wonderful combination! The meringue topping is, well, the frosting on the cake, so to speak :)
If you are in need of an easy, impressive and irresistibly delicious summer dessert, look no further!
Lemon Meringue Ice Cream Pie in a Toasted Pecan CrustAdapted from Bon Appetit, April, 2007
2 tablespoons grated fresh lemon zest
1 cup fresh lemon juice
1 1/3 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 3/4 sticks (3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon pieces
Note: I used the above recipe for lemon curd but see this recipe for Microwave Lemon Curd as an alternative! It's been tried by me and is great!
1 1/2 cups finely chopped pecans
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted
3 cups vanilla ice cream, slightly softened, divided
4 large egg whites, room temperature (I used pasteurized eggs)
Pinch of cream of tartar
6 tablespoons sugar
For lemon curd:
Whisk together zest, lemon juice, sugar, eggs, and a pinch of salt in a 2-quart heavy saucepan. Add butter all at once and cook over moderately low heat, whisking constantly, until curd is thick enough to hold marks of whisk and first bubbles appear on surface, about 10 minutes. Immediately pour curd through a fine sieve into a bowl, then chill, covered.
Preheat oven to 400°F. Mix pecans, sugar, and butter in medium bowl until moistened. Press pecan mixture onto bottom and up sides of 9-inch-diameter glass pie dish (mixture will be crumbly). Bake until crust is lightly toasted, about 12 minutes (crust will slip down sides of dish). Use back of spoon to press crust back into place. Cool crust on rack. Freeze crust 30 minutes.
Dollop 1-1/2 cups ice cream over crust; spread into even layer. Spread lemon curd over ice cream; freeze until firm, about 2 hours. Dollop 1 1/2 cups softened ice cream over lemon curd; spread into even layer. Cover and freeze until firm, about 2 hours.
Using electric mixer, beat egg whites in medium bowl until frothy. Beat in cream of tartar. With mixer running, gradually add sugar. Beat until stiff peaks form. Spoon meringue over pie, spreading to seal at edges and swirling decoratively. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 day ahead. Freeze pie. Using kitchen butane torch, toast meringue until golden in spots or place pie in a preheated 500°F oven until meringue is golden in spots, watching to prevent burning, about 3 minutes. Cut pie into wedges; serve immediately.