Because I couldn’t use the oven on Thanksgiving day (the darn turkey is an oven hog), I stayed up late the night before, baking. Two in the morning type late. I was literally sleep walking around the kitchen. I think I made the Pumpkin Bread first, then the crust for the Lemon Meringue Pie. That’s all I really remember. It’s kind of a blur.
Well, the next morning, since I was done with the baking portion, it was time to get to the lemon custard part of the pie. After a lot of mixing, heating, and spilling, I finally poured it into the crust and stuck it in the fridge to solidify. According to the cookbook, all it’d take was thirty minutes. Thirty minutes. And in thirty minutes, I’d have a delicious pie and be victorious.
Thirty minutes later and fifteen minutes until the guests arrive, I took out all my meringue supplies. The meringue was beautiful. It was the stiffest, foamiest, most wonderful meringue ever. I even snapped a picture of it. (Technology issues, sorry you can’t see it.) But when I brought the pie out of the fridge, it was still liquidy. Eh. So I waited a while longer. By then, my aunt and uncle had shown up, and my marvelous meringue was melting. I checked the pie again. The lemon custard was still sloshing around inside the crust, so I put it in the freezer to speed things up. A little while later, I checked it again. Still soupy. I put it back in the fridge. My meringue was starting to look really droopy, so I blended it to stiffness and checked the pie. Still soupy.
Now all our guests had arrived and some began wondering why I was running around frantically, twitching, blending white stuff, and opening and closing the fridge door like a lunatic. I had a million problems going against me at the same time. First, my Thanksgiving dinner was getting cold, second, I had to get the meringue on the pie before it melted into a puddle, and third, the custard wasn’t solidified enough for me to be able to spread the meringue on it.
By this time, I was a great big dramatic and mournful quitter, ready to toss the whole thing. Evidently, my mom noticed my grief and tried taking a wack at fixing the pie. She said I should put it in the “big freezer”. This freezer is the one in our garage that’s much cooler than the one built into our dinosaur fridge. So here I go, me and my soup-pie, into the garage. But this doesn’t stop the problem of the melting meringue, I point out to my mother after coming back from the quest. So back I go, me and my observations, into the garage to retrieve the pie.
Still a quitter, I was mumbling things about throwing away the darn thing and telling everyone that they heard incorrectly, I didn’t make a lemon meringue pie. No. I made PUMP-kin Brrread. I don’t know how they were confused. Must have been someone’s accent. But my mom was now engaged in the dilemma and was telling me that if I didn’t have anything good to say to be quiet as she attempted to spread my melted meringue on the soup. If she pushed too hard, the meringue would submerge in yellow, so she had to be delicate. Finally, it looked kind of like a lemon meringue pie. So back I went into the famous garage to put it in the freezer.
After dinner, I was sent to check on it. I shook it. It didn’t seem to jiggle this time. Things were looking up! There were only a few ice chips coating the meringue, no biggie. I was actually starting to feel like it was going to turn out well after all. Then, mom slid the knife in. Crrruunch. Not a good sound when you’re only halfway through the pie. She pulled the slice out. Immediately, a flood of yellow filled in the spot where the slice was. The only reason it seemed solid was because the top part froze.
Somehow, all our guests knew about (and were looking forward to) the dumb pie, so I had to give them the bad news. It wouldn’t be ready tonight. Apparently, it wasn’t going to be ready the day after, either. It was still lemon soup in the morning. It never did solidify. I don’t know what happened. . .
At least the pumpkin bread was good.