I’m developing a French lemon meringue tart for both frozen and chilled applications.
I’m having issues with the bruleed meringue separating from the curd. Does any one have a suggestion of how to prevent this?
Please post your meringue recipe and how do you prepare it exactly. Was it underbeaten or overbeaten?
its a classic Italian meringue. From what I noticed its more the curd condensation in the fridge after 3-4 days that is causing the separation issues. or maybe i should be more specific and say is’t sliding apart of one another … the curd and meringue
The meringue keeps its integrity throughout life (7 Days) and is completely cooled before use.
Hi Sascha, Italian meringue is very stable. did you add it directly on top of the pie after you put the filling or, freeze the pie to allow the filling to set properly first before topping with a meringue.?
Its a baked curd that is completely cooled before adding the meringue.
I didn’t freeze the tart, thinking that the escape of moisture (synerisis process) would be worse.
Does your process allow you to top with meringue while the filling is still hot?
Also, are you using any cream of tartar or another acid in the meringue?
Hi Sacha… The issue of meringue separation from the filling is caused by some voids or gas bubbles in between the topping and the filling. I remember I did experience this 40 years back during my baking school days. The instructor told us to spread the meringue topping snugly that there is no air gaps in between. Further from personal EXPERIENCE, An Italian meringue without any acidulant stabilizer or even some glucose syrup tends to be drier and prone to separate. This can be exacerbated if it’s whipped to nearly dry peak. I ONLY beat to medium peak ( the meringue is glossy). Another experience beating the meringue at high speed always create larger gas bubbles which can also affect adhesion of the meringue from the filling.
In this case during the final moments of whipping I shift to medium speed to reduce bubble size of the beaten meringue.
Another reason is loose binding between the topping and the filling applicable in standard meringue pies.
If if we make a topping from French meringue we ensure that the meringue is cooked so it binds the filling so we do the" surface charring "in a hot oven to ensure heat will gel( and cook) the topping to the filling.
Chilling or freezing the pie will also set the surface and if you put a cooked meringue topping that is glossy and sticky (not dry) from the inverted sugar created it will not separate…
Hope this helps…
yes our process will allow it to add the meringue hot. and yes, citric acid.
yes this helps a lot. thank you.
I would try a run adding depositing the meringue while the filling is still hot and perhaps acidulating the meringue a little.
Also, as Roy says, be sure that there is complete contact between meringue and pie, including at the crust edges.