Several years ago, California used to have a restaurant called Baker’s Square. I’m under the impression that these still exist somewhere in the US (possibly Ohio?), but they were here for years and then one day, in the span of only a few days, they all abruptly shut down.
I read a bit of the Wikipedia history for the brand and learned that they faced some bankruptcy issues that caused the speedy closures and also that they are affiliated with a restaurant called Village Inn. Now, the restaurant wasn’t particularly fancy as far as cuisine goes (think of a more tasty Denny’s), but MAN. THAT PLACE COULD DO A PIE.
Memories of their Dutch Apple Pie and French Silk Pie and my mom’s favorite Wild Berry Pie accompany a lot of great moments around holidays and special occasions. But when I got older and had a car, all the memories are of one special pie: the Lemon Supreme. I’d pick up a slice for no reason at all just to enjoy it’s tangy lemon and creamy, cheesy base.
Lemon Supreme Pie
(adapted slightly from this recipe)
1 unbaked deep-dish pastry shell, 9 inches (from the freezer section)
3/4 cup granulated sugar and 1/3 cup of granulated sugar
6 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups water
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
Optional: 2 teaspoons grated lemon peel, 4-5 drops of yellow food coloring
CREAM CHEESE FILLING:
1 8 ounce package of cream cheese
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 1/2 cups of whipped topping (like Cool Whip)
1 tablespoon of lemon juice
- Set oven to 450°. Line pastry shell with foil and bake for 8 minutes. Remove foil and bake uncovered for 5 minutes longer. Remove from oven and cool.
- For lemon filling, combine the 3/4 cup of sugar, cornstarch and salt. Stir in the water over medium-high heat until smooth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and add the remaining 1/3 cup of sugar. Cook and stir for two minutes until thickened and bubbly. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice and butter (include your food coloring and lemon peel here, if adding them to your pie). Make sure the mixture is not too thin- if so, stir over medium heat for just a few seconds (I’d say 15-20 seconds, max. You don’t want it to get too thick or set.) Cool to room temperature.
- For the cream cheese filling, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Add in the whipped topping and lemon juice.
- Once your lemon topping is cooled, layer your pie. Begin with the cream cheese mixture, spreading it evenly into the bottom of your cooked pastry shell. Top with the lemon filling and refrigerate overnight.
- I didn’t use any food coloring because I was convinced I didn’t need a useless additive. I was partially right. Fortunately, lemon juice has some color to it. However, the lemon filling looked a lot like glue while cooking due to it’s barely colored, see-through ingredients. If I was bringing to a party or having guests, I’d likely add the yellow food coloring to ensure a pretty presentation. (Keep in mind the original pie from the restaurant looks like this.)
- The original recipe calls for making a bit extra of the cream-cheese filling to pipe on top. I was never a huge fan of the extra topping- the pie is so good it didn’t need it! Alternatively, you could scoop a dollop of whipped cream (or even the leftover whipped topping) on top.
And lastly? THIS IS THE PIE. The very same pie I used to drive miles for. The one that I desperately tried to hunt down when the restaurant closed with no warning.
It’s completely delicious and I can’t get enough.