Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Key Lime Pie

I know I've said this a million times (or maybe five), but I'm not much of a dessert person. So when I was having people over for dinner Saturday night, I let my friend Jeff who was visiting from out of town decide what to make for dessert. He immediately suggested key lime pie, and luckily I had just noticed a recipe in this month's Gourmet magazine. Unluckily, it required us squeezing 2 lbs. of itty bitty limes. And by "us" I mean Jeff and his girlfriend Kat. I delegated that task. I'm a good kitchen manager.

Other than the lime squeezing, the pie came together pretty easily. Since it has to chill for eight hours, it can be made well ahead of dinner, so it's not in the way while everything else is cooking. The flavor was great--really, really tart. I liked the almonds in the graham cracker crust. They added a nice crunchy texture. I served the pie with homemade slightly sweetened whipped cream, which I highly recommend to balance out the tartness of the pie. I wouldn't have been able to eat the pie by itself, and I like sour things. Next time I think I will add a blackberry puree drizzle to compliment the lime too.

Key Lime Pie
Adapted from Gourmet, March 2009, originally from Town Hall Restaurant, San Francisco

7 (5"X2 1/2" graham crackers, broken into small pieces
3/4 cup almonds
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 stick unsalted butter, melted

2 (14 oz.) cans sweetened condensed milk
zest of 2 key limes, grated on a microplane
1 cup fresh key lime juice (from about 2 lbs. fresh key limes)
4 large egg yolks
2 drops green food coloring for color (optional)

-Preheat oven to 350 degrees with rack in middle. Butter a 9 inch pie plate.
-Pulse almonds in a food processor until finely chopped. Add graham crackers and sugar and pulse until they are a fine crumb.
-Transfer crumb mixture to a bowl and mix with melted butter.
-Press crumb mixture evenly onto bottom and side of pie plate.
-Bake until lightly browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Cool completely. (Leave the oven on.)
-Gently whisk together filling ingredients (sweetened condensed milk, lime zest, lime juice, egg yolks, and food coloring, if using) in a medium bowl until smooth and pour into cooled crust.
-Bake 15 to 20 minutes until just set in center. (It will still appear jiggly, the filling will set as it cools.)
-Cool completely on rack, then chill pie loosely covered in the refrigerator at least 8 hours.

Note: Pie can be chilled up to 2 days.


Anonymous said...

OH! My favorite! Yum! What a great idea with almond in the crust. I bet it paired very well.

hmills said...

This pie was delicious! Key lime is my favorite kind of pie. Thanks for having me over!

Anonymous said...

MMMMM...key lime pie is one of my favorites! I was born a Florida girl... :)

I love the combo of blueberries and lime too...the sweetness of blueberries is a lovely compliment to the tartness of limes. I have a summer cobbler that I can't wait to make!