Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Lemon meringue pie, relaxed home education style

At lunchtime today (after, incidentally, making my best breadmaker loaf so far...) I asked Dan what he'd like to eat tonight.

After much thought, he said, 'Lemon meringue pie'.

Or, to be accurate, he said: 'Lemon mer-ing-gyou pie' since that's how I thought the word was pronounced when I was little, having read it when I was about six.

Sure, I said, but he'd need to cook it. He wants to learn to cook this week, but like any home educator he's not going to learn step by step, starting with simple things. Nope, he was going for something he wanted to achieve. The fact that he didn't know how to make pastry, or cornflour sauce, or meringue, was quite irrelevant.

So we found my recipe folder, and he got stuck in. I haven't made pastry by hand for a long time (I use the food processor) but Dan said he probably wouldn't have access to one on the Doulos, so I showed him how to rub fat into flour and do the thing properly. He's very thorough. It took rather longer than it would have done if I'd made it, but it was ready just after we'd finished our first course, and it looked absolutely stunning! I said I'd take a photo, so I did:

Then Dan said it would be better to take one without the flash, as the colours would be better. So Tim decided to experiment, and took several pictures on various settings. Then he went to get his tripod, so he could hold it more steadily. And we sat around the table waiting in anticipation for this wonderful-looking lemon meringue pie, while Tim took photo after photo...

Eventually he took one which looked as he wanted it to. And yes, it did have better colours than my initial one taken in automatic mode with flash, but since we only wanted the pictures to post on blogs I don't think I'd have bothered to take more than one.

Never mind, it's all useful education since now Tim understand the camera better, and my computer is host to about fifteen photos of a pie.

Eventually we got to eat it, and it was extremely good. A bit runny to serve (but perhaps the lemons from our trees are juicier than average-sized shop ones) but otherwise perfect.


merry said...


Qatar Cat said...

Loved the Lemon Story! :^)

And oh my god how I miss my Larnaka lemon tree!!