Huckleberry Meringue Pie

Huckleberry Meringue Pie makes a delicious dessert, hot or cold, for almost any meal. If huckleberries are not available, bilberries or blueberries may be substituted.4 oz. flour

½ teaspoon salt

2 oz. butter, cut into small pieces

2 teaspoons sugar

1 egg yolk

2 to

3 tablespoons cold water

1 lb. huckleberries, washed and hulled

4 oz. sugar

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 egg whites

½ teaspoon cream of tartar

3 tablespoons sugar :½ teaspoon vanilla essence

First prepare the pastry. Sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl. Add the butter and, using your fingertips, rub it into the flour until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar.

Beat the egg yolk with 2 tablespoons of the water. Stir this into the flour and butter mixture. Add the extra water if necessary to make a firm dough. Lightly knead the dough and form it into a ball. Wrap it in greaseproof or waxed paper and place it in the refrigerator to chill for 30 minutes.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a circle about J-inch thick. Lift the dough on your rolling pin and lay it over an 8-inch pie dish. Ease the dough into the dish and trim the edges with a knife. Return the pie dish to the refriger-ator and chill for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to moderate 350°F (Gas Mark 4, 180°C).

Prick the base of the pastry case all over with a fork. Line the case with crumpled aluminium foil or greaseproof or waxed paper and fill it with dried beans or uncooked rice.

Place the pie in the oven and bake for 10 minutes. Then remove the foil or paper and beans or rice and continue baking for 5 minutes, or until the pastry is lightly browned.

Remove the pie dish from the oven.

Put the huckleberries in the pastry case and sprinkle the sugar and lemon juice over them.

Return the pie dish to the oven and bake for a further 15 minutes.

Remove the pie dish from the oven and set it aside.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, beat the egg whites with a wire whisk or rotary beater until they are foamy. Add the cream of tartar and continue beating until the egg whites form soft peaks.

Gradually beat in the sugar and vanilla essence, and continue beating until the meringue mixture is stiff.

Spread the meringue mixture over the top of the pie and return it to the oven.

Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the meringue is lightly browned and firm to the touch.

Remove the pie from the oven and serve at once or leave it to cool before serving.

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