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Martha's Key Lime Pie

MyCookbook Recipe Database
MyCookbook Member: MSL
Recipe Category: Dessert
Recipe Preparation Level: moderate
    There are two main varieties of limes: the Persian (the most widely available lime in the United States) and the key lime from Florida. When you're making a key-lime pie, this distinction is very important. The key lime is smaller and rounder than the Persian, and its color is more yellow than green. Its flavor and fragrance are more subtle and delicate than the Persian lime’s, though both are wonderful sources of vitamin C. Look for brightly colored, smooth-skinned limes that are heavy for their size. Small brown areas on the skin won’t affect flavor or succulence, but hard or shriveled skin will.

    When preparing key-lime pie, first bake the graham-cracker crust, and let it cool. Then add the filling, and bake again. You’ll know the pie is done when the center is set but still quivers when the pan is nudged. Let the pie cool; top it with whipped cream or soft meringue. Before serving, chill the pie in the freezer for 10 minutes; this will make slicing easier.

    Makes 1 pie

    1 1/2 cups graham-cracker crumbs
    6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
    5 tablespoons granulated sugar
    1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
    4 large egg yolks
    1/2 cup freshly squeezed key-lime juice
    1 tablespoon grated key-lime zest, plus more for garnish
    1 1/2 cups heavy cream, chilled
    Grated Persian-lime zest, for garnish

    1. Heat oven to 375°. Combine graham-cracker crumbs, butter, and 3 tablespoons sugar in a medium bowl; mix well. Press into a 9-inch pie plate, and bake until lightly browned, about 12 minutes. Remove from oven, and transfer to a wire rack until completely cooled.

    2. Lower oven temperature to 325°. In a medium bowl, gently whisk together condensed milk, egg yolks, key-lime juice, and zest. Pour into the prepared, cooled crust.

    3. Return pie to oven, and bake 15 to 17 minutes, until the center is set but still quivers when the pan is nudged. Let cool completely on a wire rack.

    4. Shortly before serving, combine cream and remaining 2 tablespoons sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Whisk on medium speed until soft peaks form, 2 to 3 minutes. Spoon over cooled pie; garnish with zest. Serve immediately.

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