Bullock's Tea Room Lemon Meringue Pie

"Bullock's Department Stores were Los Angeles icons that were around since 1907 when the first store opened, until the end of the century when the entire chain of stores had been sold. Their tea rooms featured good food, elegant decor and great fashion shows. This is a nostalgia recipe, a reminder from those good old days. The prized recipe was provided to the Los Angeles Times by the family of Hazel Wilson, head baker at Bullock's Pasadena. The recipe calls for one 9-inch baked pie shell, either purchased or one made in advance. The preparation here is for the pie filling with a meringue topping baked just long enough singe the meringue."
photo by Chef Edlear photo by Chef Edlear
photo by Chef Edlear
Ready In:
1hr 5mins
1 pie




  • For the pie filling: Mix flour, cornstarch, salt, sugar and boiling water in the top of a double boiler.
  • Cook over simmering water about 15 minutes or until thickened and clear, stir constantly.
  • Add lightly beated egg yolks and cook 2 minutes longer.
  • Add lemon juice, zest and butter.
  • Cool slightly, then turn into a baked pie shell.
  • For the meringue: pre-heat oven to 400°F.
  • Beat egg whites until frothy.
  • Gradually beat in sugar and cream of tartar until egg whites are stiff.
  • Spoon meringue over the pie filling, completely covering the filling.
  • Place pie in the 400-degree F oven to brown slightly, about 10 minutesor until tinged with brown.

Questions & Replies

Got a question? Share it with the community!


  1. This was a different tecnique than I'm used to , so I tried to be careful about my timing and adherance to the directions. I needed to cook both the starch/water and the egg/lemon parts much longer to achieve a decent consistency, and even then the filling was very soft. It could have used more egg, cornstarch, or less water, although the quantity of filling was perfect. The flavor was good. It didn't cut into nice slices, due to the softness of the filling. Would have made a great sauce to spoon over a cake, though.


I live in a wooded hillside area of Los Angeles where it feels like being out in the country. I grew up in Rhode Island, and came to LA after graduating from URI. I recently retired from my job as an environmental specialist. So now I have time to collect internet recipes. My hobbies & interests are aquatics, shell collecting, my cats, feeding stray cats, home improvement projects and cooking. I love to travel and, years ago, lived in Mexico for several months. My favorite cookbooks are the ones written by Diana Kennedy; they are all great; and I have them all, some signed by her when I was enrolled in her cooking classes. I have a lot of cookbooks; some of my other fave authors and their books are: Madhur Jaffrey (especially World Vegetarian, World of East Vegetarian Cooking and A Taste of the Far East), Faye Levy, Martha Rose Shulman (especially Mediterranean Light, Provencal Light and Mexican Light) and Paula Wolfert.
View Full Profile

Find More Recipes