Lemon Sponge Pie

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I have never had Lemon Sponge Pie before.  I found it in our antique recipe collection and being someone who loves a good lemon dessert recipe I knew I had to try it.  The recipe is not signed or dated but no oven temperature is listed. “Cook in a slow oven” the recipe states.  This leads me to believe it is quite old.

The directions seemed simple enough.  The recipe only calls for 1 lemon – I bought 6.  I was basically going into this cooking adventure figuring I would screw it up around 5 times (see daffodil cake).  These old recipes are sometimes hard to understand and having never made or even seen a Lemon Sponge Pie I was trying to temper my expectations.  An old time lemon filled dessert was worth a try and I am sure glad we did now!

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This is a pretty simple pie with pretty simple ingredients.  The hardest part is whisking egg whites to stiff peaks.  So to make the pie I will use my stand mixer to whisk egg whites and another large mixing bowl to combine everything in. The first step is separate the 2 egg whites and yolks and start whisking whites.

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Next I ready a 9 inch pie pan and line with crust being sure to vent bottom.

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In a large mixing bowl I start combining the filling ingredients.  1 cup sugar, 3 tablespoons softened butter, and the 2 egg yolks get combined first.  I used a hand mixer on medium speed.

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Then add juice and zest of 1 lemon and continue mixing.  Next add 3 tablespoon flour and continue mixing.

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The final addition is 1 cup of milk and the egg whites that were whisked to stiff peaks.  I combined this last step by hand with a spatula to take it easy on the egg whites.

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Now you can pour into your pie crust.  Just to be fancy I add a little more lemon zest to the top.  At this point I was feeling pretty good about recipe and realized I now had 5 extra lemons.

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Into the oven for 45 minutes at 350 degrees.  The directions call for 3/4 hours in a “slow oven”.  I kept checking the pie at 20, 30, 40 minutes afraid the time in the oven was too much.  Then I remembered I was cooking the pie in my 35+ year old oven – it was probably the model this recipe was based on.

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45 minutes in the oven was just right.  I removed my Lemon Sponge Pie and let it cool for a few hours.  The wait was awful, at this point it looked really good and I was excited to try it.

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The wait was worth it.  The pie is amazing.  The top of the pie is a soft and spongy (imagine that) and below that is a layer of gooey lemon deliciousness.

It was a big hit with Em and the little maniacs as well.  I am starting to regain my antique recipe confidence after this one.  I know we will be making this for years to come!

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Lemon Sponge Pie
Recipe Type: Dessert
Author: Blogging with Apples
Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 45 mins
Total time: 1 hour 5 mins
Serves: 8
An old time recipe for Lemon Sponge Pie
  • 1 pie crust
  • 2 eggs, whites and yolks divided
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 lemon, juice and zest
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup milk
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer whisk egg whites to stiff peaks.
  3. Line a 9 inch pie pan with crust and vent bottom.
  4. In a large mixing bowl combine sugar, butter, and egg yolks.
  5. Once combined add juice and zest of lemon (re leaving a little zest top top pie).
  6. Next add flour and combine.
  7. Then add milk and egg whites whisked to stiff peaks.
  8. Finishing combining gently.
  9. Pour pie batter into pie crust and top with last of lemon zest.
  10. Bake for 45 minutes until top is browned and pie is cooked through.
  11. Allow to cool for at least a few hours.
  12. Slice and devour!


Jeff McIntosh

About Jeff McIntosh

Jeff's family lives in his childhood home on a 1/4 acre in town lot. Despite the small space to work with, they have challenged ourselves to produce as much of our own food as possible — and cook it! They document their journey at Blogging with Apples.