Make your own pie crust from scratch, or to make the recipe even easier, just bake a pre-made frozen pie crust. Bake the crust and have it cooled and ready before making the pie filling.
Break the four eggs and separate the yolks from the whites into two separate bowls.
Zest two lemons and then juice the lemons to make ½ cup lemon juice.
To make the lemon pie filling:
In a saucepan, add the sugar, constarch, salt, and zest of two lemons.
On medium heat, stir water into the saucepan and continue stirring the saucepan for 10-15 minutes, or until the mixture thickens and begins to bubble.
Slowly spoon 5-6 tbsp. of the heated mixture into the egg yolks, stirring constantly so as not to cook the eggs.
Then stir the egg yolk mixture into the saucepan with the rest of the heated filling.
Stir in the lemon juice and the butter and continue stirring until the butter is melted and the mixture is smooth.
Pour the filling into the pre-baked pie shell and set aside to cool.
To make the meringue:
In a small saucepan, add 1 tbsp. of cornstarch, 2 tbsp. sugar and ½ cup water.
Mix the three ingredients well over mefium heat, stirring constantly until the mixture thickens and clears slightly.
Set saucepan aside to cool.
In a mixing bowl, beat the egg whites until frothy.
Add in vanilla and the pinch of salt and beat again to incorporate.
Gradually beat in 4 tbsp. of sugar, 1 tbsp. at a time.
Then beat in the cooled cornstarch mixture.
Continue beating until stiff peaks are formed.
To finish the pie:
Take a spatula and spread the meringue evenly over the pie being sure to spread thre meringue all the way to touching the crust.
Place the pie into a pre-heated 400º oven and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the top is set and shows a nice color.
Remove the pie from the oven and allow to cool COMPLETELY before slicing. When cooled, store the pie in the refrigerator beneath a pie dome,