A few weeks ago, the Valley celebrated all things citrus with the second annual Citrus Festival.
The festival covered the span of the whole weekend and was filled with music, food and contests. Although I was not in the valley to submit a recipe for the citrus baked good contest, I do have a recipe that I am confident would have been a winner.
The recipe I would have used is one that has been passed down through generations on my mom’s side of the family. Her mother gave it to her and my mother will eventually give it to me. The recipe is for $100 Two-Crust Lemon Pie.
Back when my mother was attending San Bernardino Valley College, she was studying Home Economics. As part of a class assignment, each student had to submit an entry for the cake or pie contest at the local fair, the National Orange Show. My mom really liked eating lemon pies but was not crazy about the meringue, so she took to the family cookbooks looking for an alternative. It was during this search that she discovered the “Two-Crust Lemon Pie.” My mom baked it to perfection and ending up winning the contest which included a Sweepstakes price of a trophy and $75 dollars.
Around this time my mom was also saving money to go on a 13-week summer trip with the Continental Singers, touring the United States and Europe. Shortly after winning the pie contest her Uncle Bob called and asked what one of the pies was worth. Seeing as how her prize from the fair was $75 dollars, she presented that as the price to her uncle. Uncle Bob raised the price and offered my mom $100 dollars for the pie! Word soon spread to family and friends of the now famous $100 Two-Crust Lemon Pie and orders came rushing in. The aroma of grated lemon and baking pastry filled the kitchen for weeks and the summer trip was paid for in no time!
Recently, my dad made the pie for an office pie contest and took home first prize! This is truly a winning family recipe. My mom says the secret is tangy thick custard filling with a sugary sprinkled crisp crust.
Sadly, I can’t share the exact secret family recipe that we use, but I have found a recipe online that is quite comparable. Try it and see if you don’t fall in love with this old style lemon pie!
This recipe can be found online at www.allrecipes.com and is user friendly. Cuts the preparation process down by offering the use of prepared pie crust. However, if you are feeling up to the task, homemade pie crust is always the best option.
2 lemons, thinly sliced
2 cups white sugar
4 eggs, beaten
1 package prepared Pillsbury pie crust (found in the refrigerator section)
1). Slice the lemons and combine in a large bowl with 2 cups sugar. Let stand for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
2). Add the beaten eggs and mix well. Pour into an unbaked 9 inch piecrust and cover with top crust.
3). Brush the top with milk and sprinkle granulated sugar on top.
4). Bake at 450 degrees for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 375 and bake for an additional 20-25 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the pie comes out clean.