Cranberry and Orange Meringue Pie (Gluten-Free, Paleo, Vegan)
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
Buttery orange shortcrust pastry meets a tart cranberry and orange filling spiced with ginger and a hint of orange blossom, all topped with a silky meringue. My Cranberry and Orange Meringue Pie is a sure-fire Christmas winner.
Ingredients
For the shortcrust pastry:
  • 150g almond flour/ground almonds (or cassava flour)
  • 100g arrowroot flour
  • 125g raw grass-fed butter or coconut oil
  • Juice 1 orange
For the cranberry and orange filling:
  • 250g fresh cranberries
  • 2-4 tbsp water
  • Juice of 2 large oranges
  • Zest of 1 large orange
  • 75g/1/3 cup coconut sugar
  • 35g/1/4 cup arrowroot flour
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp agar agar powder
  • ¼ cup coconut oil/butter
  • ½-1 tsp orange blossom water
For the vegan meringue:
  • 260g/1¼ cup raw cane sugar
  • ⅔ cup organic aquafaba (chickpea juice from 1 tin/carton)
  • ¾ tsp xanthan gum
  • ¼ tsp cream of tartar
Instructions
  1. In a small mixing bowl sieve in your flours and salt. Chop your butter (or coconut oil) into small cubes and throw in. Cover the bowl with cling film, give it a good shake until the butter is covered by the flour and then place into the freezer for 30 minutes. This is what makes your pastry lovely and light and crumbly texture. Freshly squeeze your orange juice and pop that into the fridge to chill until needed.
  2. Remove your flour and butter bowl from the freezer and pour into your stand mixer and attach a standard beater. Process on the lowest setting and work up to the 2nd speed. Gradually pour in your chilled orange juice until the dough comes together into small oat like sized balls. You won't need all of your juice - you want to use just enough for it to only just form the beginnings of a dough ball. Remove the pastry from the mixer and form by hand into a ball. Cover with cling film and leave to chill in the fridge for 45 minutes.
  3. Whilst your dough is resting in the fridge begin preparing your cranberry purée for the filling. Add the cranberries and water to a medium-sized heavy bottomed pan. Cook on a medium heat until you can crush the berries with the back of your spoon. Start with 2 tbsp of water, however, if you feel that the cranberries are too absorbent then add a couple more. Push the cranberries through a fine-meshed sieve over a bowl. Throw away the pulp and set your purée to one side.
  4. Pre-heat your oven to 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 and grease your pie tin. Remove your dough from the fridge and gently warm it between your palms and give it a little knead. Next 'knuckle in' the dough into your loose-based pie/tart tin (23cm/9in, 3cm/1¼in deep) until nice and even and with a slightly thicker crust around the edges. Prick it with a fork for a few times and then place your pie crust into the freezer for 10 minutes until firm.
  5. Remove your pie crust from the freezer, line with a little baking parchment, pour in some 'baking beans', and pop it onto the middle shelf of the oven to blind bake for 10 minutes until the pastry begins to look dry and sort of pale. You want it to be almost baked but not quite. Remove the baking beans and cook for a further 10-15 minutes until fully cooked through. If it begins to brown too fast simply pop over some tin foil shiny side up.
  6. Whilst your pie case is cooking whip up your meringue topping. Divide your raw cane sugar into 2 equal halves, transfer one half into a high powered blender and using a milling blade, process until it begins to turn into an icing sugar like consistency. Place your aquafaba, xanthan gum, and cream of tartar into your stand mixer and whisk on max speed until doubled in size and fluffy. Be sure to periodically scrape down the sides to incorporate all of the ingredients. Spoon in your powdered sugar first, spoon by spoon, followed by your granular cane sugar following the same method. Whisk until smooth and fluffy with stiff peaks. You shouldn't be able to feel any grittiness of the sugar when rubbing the mixture between your fingers. Place in the refrigerator whilst you prepare your filling.
  7. Place your cranberry purée, orange juice, orange zest, coconut sugar, arrowroot flour, ground ginger, and agar agar powder into a medium sized pan. Whisk together until smooth and place over a low heat. Whisk continuously until thickened but still pourable. Remove from the heat and stir in your coconut oil and orange blossom water.
  8. Remove your pie from the oven once baked and pour over your filling. Leave to cool for a few minutes before topping with the meringue and bake for a further 15-20 minutes until the meringue has browned. Remove from the oven and leave the pie to cool completely before removing from the tin. Best served chilled.
Notes
Utensils needed: 23cm/9in loose-based pie/tart tin, 3cm/1¼in deep, stand mixer, and/or hand held/electric whisk.

*All cup measurements used are UK cup measurements and so 1 cup = 250ml.
Recipe by Greens of the Stone Age at http://greensofthestoneage.com/cranberry-and-orange-meringue-pie-gluten-free-paleo-vegan/