Tuesday, February 28, 2012

key lime pie

key lime pies were never my favorite. i much prefer a banana cream or a strawberry rhubarb. but then one day i had the most amazing slice of key liminess at Houston's (now called Hillstone). i saw plates of key lime pie float across the dining room all night long and became intrigued. i couldn't help but order it even though everything in my mind reminded me that i don't like key lime pie. but after taking one bite, i knew i was in love. found myself thinking about the pie weeks later. months later i called Houston's on a weekly basis to see if they had that pie. finally, when they had it, i ordered two to-go. i ate one slice in the car and froze the other one for another day. that's when i knew my love affair with key lime pie began. 

but i've got to say, more often than not, key lime pie disappoints me. if it's remotely neon in color, i refuse to eat it. if the crust is a typical pie crust and not a graham cracker crust, i'm reluctant to order it. so one day i decided i'd find a good recipe so that i could make it at any time. 

on a nice hot day, a chilled slice of key lime pie almost comes off as refreshing. and with the warm winter we've had it was only fitting that i salute the sun with a creamy tart pie. i made a pie on sunday and when my cousin and i ate nearly half the pie in one sitting, i decided to make a second one on monday. (because i made the same pie twice, you'll see pictures from both days kinda jumbled together.)

roll the hell outta them!

is butter great, or what?

please excuse my old woman hands. pressing the pie crust with your hands/fingers is much easier than with a spatula. for the edges i found pressing with your four fingers on the inside with your thumb pressing against the  outer glass gives it a little added pressure. 

squeeze juice over a strainer or you'll be fishing out seeds for days with a spoon. trust me, i've done that too many times to ever make that mistake again. plus you don't want any pulp in your pie! 

at this point my hands felt arthritic. squeezing those tiny little things isn't easy if they aren't all super juicy. 

key lime pie

for crust:
- 1/2 c crushed graham cracker
- 6 tbs butter, melted
- 2 tbs sugar
- pinch of salt

for filling:
- 1/2 c key lime juice (i used a little more than that bc i like mine really tart)
- 1 14oz. can of condensed milk
- 5 egg yolks, beaten

1. preheat oven to 325 degrees F
2. in your pie pan, mix together graham cracker crumbs, butter, sugar and salt until all of mixture is moist
3. with hands press in to pie pan to cover bottom and edges
4. bake for about 10 minutes so that the pie crust sets a bit
5. take pie crust out of the oven and allow to cool a bit
6. increase the heat of the oven to 375 degrees F
7. in a bowl mix egg yolks, condensed milk and lime juice until smooth and a uniform consistency
8. pour filling into pie crust
9. bake on bottom 1/3 of the oven for approx. 22 minutes or until the filling has set (is not jiggly)
10. let pie cool and chill in fridge. serve with whipped cream. 

simple, and not that pretty, but SO EFFING GOOD!!!! trust me, even if you think you don't like key lime pie, you'll probably like this one. i've changed minds with this pie. it's that kinda magical. 

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