A cloud of toasty meringue tops creamy coconut pudding in a recipe from Patty's friend and fellow soul-food queen. Though not difficult, the filling for this pie does require attentive cooking. This recipe comes from Patty Pinner's cookbook Sweety Pies (tauntonstore.com).


Vertamae Grosvenor's Coconut Custard Meringue Pie






  • Prepare Pastry for Single Crust Pie. Prick bottom and sides of pastry with a fork. Line pastry with a double thickness of foil. Bake in a 450° oven for 8 minutes. Remove foil. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes more or until golden. Cool on a wire rack. Reduce oven temperature to 350°.

  • For filling: In a large heavy saucepan, combine 1 cup sugar, the cornstarch and salt. Gradually whisk in milk, blending well. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until mixture thickens and begins to boil. Remove from heat.

  • In a medium mixing bowl, beat egg yolks with an electric mixer until thick and lemon color, about 3 minutes. Slowly stir about 1/4 cup of the hot milk mixture into the egg yolks. Pour yolk mixture back into pan with remaining hot milk mixture. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, for 1 minute or until thick and bubbly. Remove from heat. Stir in 1 cup coconut, the butter, coconut extract and vanilla until butter is melted and incorporated. Cover and set aside. Wash beaters and immediately prepare topping.

  • For topping: In a large mixing bowl, beat egg whites and cream of tartar with an electric mixer on medium speed until foamy. Increase speed to medium-high and beat in the 3 tablespoons sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, and the cornstarch. Continue beating until shiny, stiff peaks form (tips stand straight when beaters are lifted from mixture).

  • Pour hot filling into pastry shell. Mound topping in center and spread it to the crust to seal. Use the back of a spoon to make textured peaks and valleys in the meringue. Sprinkle with coconut. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until meringue is golden brown and the coconut is toasted. Let cool completely on a wire rack before serving; chill leftovers.

Nutrition Facts (Vertamae Grosvenor's Coconut Custard Meringue Pie)

487 calories; 23 g total fat; 12 g saturated fat; 3 g polyunsaturated fat; 7 g monounsaturated fat; 101 mg cholesterol; 367 mg sodium. 249 mg potassium; 63 g carbohydrates; 2 g fiber; 39 g sugar; 8 g protein; 1 g trans fatty acid; 506 IU vitamin a; 0 mg vitamin c; 0 mg thiamin; 0 mg riboflavin; 2 mg niacin equivalents; 0 mg vitamin b6; 58 mcg folate; 1 mcg vitamin b12; 121 mg calcium; 2 mg iron;

Pastry for a Single-Crust Pie



  • In a medium bowl stir together flour and salt. Using pastry blender, cut in shortening and butter until pieces are pea size.

  • Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of the water over part of the flour mixture; toss with a fork. Push moistened pastry to side of bowl. Repeat moistening flour mixture, using 1 tablespoon of the water at a time, until flour mixture is moistened. Gather flour mixture into a ball, kneading gently until it holds together.

  • On a lightly floured surface use your hands to slightly flatten pastry. Roll pastry from center to edges into a circle about 12 inches in diameter.

  • Wrap pastry circle around the rolling pin. Unroll into a 9-inch pie plate. Ease pastry into pie plate without stretching it.

  • Trim pastry to 1/2 inch beyond edge of pie plate. Fold under extra pastry even with the plate's edge. Crimp edge as desired. Do not prick pastry. Fill and bake as directed in recipes.

Nutrition Facts (Pastry for a Single-Crust Pie)

191 calories; 12 g total fat; 5 g saturated fat; 2 g polyunsaturated fat; 4 g monounsaturated fat; 15 mg cholesterol; 187 mg sodium. 27 mg potassium; 18 g carbohydrates; 1 g fiber; 0 g sugar; 2 g protein; 1 g trans fatty acid; 194 IU vitamin a; 0 mg vitamin c; 0 mg thiamin; 0 mg riboflavin; 1 mg niacin equivalents; 0 mg vitamin b6; 44 mcg folate; 0 mcg vitamin b12; 10 mg calcium; 1 mg iron;