Key Lime Pie & Homemade Whipped Cream

This is not the unnaturally green pie you get at the store, but a TRUE key lime pie filled with fresh ingredients and flavor.  It’s a bit more work, but so worth the effort.  I was very pleased with how this pie turned out, and I would definitely make it again.  I made this one for some friends, for our dinner party, and it was the first time making this recipe.  Usually I don’t like to take chances, when cooking for other people, on recipes I haven’t tried before, but I am glad I did with this one.

As I mentioned it is a bit of work… especially when it comes to zesting and juicing all those tiny key limes!  I thought my arm would fall off, or that I would grate more of my fingers into the pie than actual zest, but I somehow made it through lol.  I bought one of those green netted bags of key limes, and I wanna say it took about 20-25 to get the full amount of zest, and ALL of them (minus the one I left out for garnish) to get the amount of juice called for in this recipe.  Actually I was a little short, and ended up having to cut up about half a regular lime for the rest.  Whether you have to do it that way or not, I strongly urge you NOT to use the bottled lime juices.  They are so artificial tasting.  Trust me on this, no short cuts!

The other thing I was tempted to take a short cut on was the crust.  A graham cracker crust, though quite simple to make, is somewhat of a struggle for me for some reason.  More often than not I end up with a crumbly mess when I go to serve it, but miraculously this one turned out well and held together nicely.  Because I was concerned though I didn’t even go for a single slice shot when taking pictures.  Not that the first slice ever comes out clean anyway!  I really just didn’t want to make my guests wait any longer as they were already being so patient allowing me to take the few photographs I was able to get (not my best work unfortunately lol).  It’s good that we didn’t wait longer because our power actually went out for some reason after that and it got dark in my house rather quickly.

Finally, making homemade whipped cream…. another labor of love for sure!  I actually don’t recall ever making my own before then, but I really enjoyed it and think I will always do it that when as long as time allows.  We did it the hard way and whipped it up by hand.  Talk about an arm workout!  Guess you don’t have to feel as guilty about eating the pie after all that hard work.  We actually all took turns because my arm was going to fall off otherwise.  Made for some good laughs for sure.  You could of course use a mixer, preferably one with a whisk attachment, but where’s the fun in that?!

Anyway, all that work comes together to make a fantastic pie with a great tart flavor and creaminess.  You will never be able to eat that green garbage from the store again!

 

Key Lime Pie

Makes : 1 pie

Ingredients :

  • 1 1/3 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 6 T. unsalted butter, melted
  • 5 large egg yolks, room temperature
  • 2 T. sugar
  • 2 T. lime zest
  • 1 (14oz) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 3/4 cup key lime juice
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
  • whipped cream for serving (recipe to follow)

Directions :

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, sugar and butter. Dump the crumbs into a 9-inch pie plate. Press the crumbs in an even layer on the bottom and up the sides of the pie plate. Bake until the crust is lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Set aside while you make the filling.
  2. In a medium bowl, beat the yolks, sugar and zest with a hand mixer until pale and thick, about 2 minutes. Add in the milk and beat for 2 to 3 minutes more. Add the lime juice and vanilla. Mix until smooth. Pour the filling into the prepared crust and bake until the filling is just set, about 10 minutes. Allow the pie to cool to room temperature; cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving. Serve with whipped cream.  *Note, I found covering with plastic wrap stuck to the pie which as you can see made it no longer smooth on top, so I put the base of my largest springform pan on top and then wrapped that on with plastic wrap.

 

Homemade Whipped Cream

Ingredients :

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 T. sugar or confectioner’s sugar (I used confectioner’s)
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Directions :

  1. In a deep mixing bowl combine all ingredients. 
  2. Using a handheld mixer on medium-high speed (or a whisk), beat until soft peaks form. Makes about 2 cups.

Recipes from picture-perfect meals

 

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