Saturday, April 4, 2009

Something like Key Lime Pie.

My aunt Marion taught me how to make Key Lime Pie when I was about 10 because I really liked it. Over the past sixteen years, I've been playing around with the recipe, and have made it about a dozen different ways with great success, but I always feel like there needs to be an occasion for pie. Pie seems like such a hassle, even a pie that couldn't be simpler to make, like a key lime pie. So, in order to use all of the limes and lemons that filled a trifle bowl as a center piece, I decided to make lime and lemon curds and a key lime pie type dessert.

Basic Key Lime pie filling is lime juice and zest, sweetened condensed milk and egg yolks. Then it is put into a graham cracker crust and topped with whipped cream. This is all fine and dandy, except, let's make it better.

1 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk
2 teaspoons of lime zest
2/3 cup lime juice
1 8 oz package of neufchatel cream cheese - at room temperature
2 egg yolks - at room temperature

Blend together and pour into a graham cracker crust (give the crust time to cool before you do lest you want lime flavored egg pie) Let it chill in the fridge for a while, then, top with meringue, because meringue is far superior to whipped cream in just about every respect. You really need your egg whites to be at room temperature before you start to whip them up with 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar, and 1/4 teaspoon salt on high speed until frothy. Then, with the mixer still going, slowly add 1/2 cup of sugar and beat until the meringue is thick and shiny, about 2 minutes. (If it is raining outside, throw in the towel and opt for whipped cream.)

I threw all of this together into a couple pyrex dishes -- I didn't even pipe the meringue out -- because I wanted it to be really casual and not fussy when I took it to a friend's house for dinner and then the next night to a Gossip Girl gathering, which was unexpectedly sparsely populated (Becky liked it at least). But by all means put this in a pie shell, throw the old culinary torch at the meringue and enjoy your pie.

I'll tell you about my lemon curd fiasco as soon as I make a tart shell to put it in.


whitney allison said...

Good golly Miss Molly, is there anything you can't do?

molly said...

oh my, yes. i just don't write about those things on my blog.