This lemon sponge pie, also known as lemon cake pie, is attributed to the Pennsylvania Dutch and is often not found outside of Pennsylvania. From what I’ve read, the pie is baked slowly and the filling separates into a lower lemon custard layer and an upper cake-like layer. It certainly sounds delicious and would make for an interesting twist on the common pie.
As you can see on this recipe, it came from ‘Etta’ as did many recipes in this collection. Etta was clearly a great baker and good friend of Gladys.
Lemon Sponge Pie
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter
2 heaping tablespoons flour
Juice and grated rind of 1 lemon
2 eggs, separated
1 cup milk
1 unbaked pie shell
Preheat oven to 375. Cream together sugar and butter. Add flour, salt, lemon juice, lemon peel, egg yolks and milk. Blend until thoroughly mixed.
Beat egg whites until stiff, then fold into the pie mixture. Pour into pie shell and bake for 10 minutes at 375. Reduce heat to 300 and continue baking for 40-50 minutes or until the pie tests done.
I found a great example of this lemon sponge pie at Bunny’s Warm Oven who graciously shares her photos and recipes (thank you!). The photo helped me to understand just how nicely it separates into two delicious layers. Although her recipe is slightly different, it does indeed yield a beautiful separation between the custard and sponge cake.
Yet another intriguing recipe to try once our meyer lemon tree begins to output its amazing quantities of lemons later this year.