My sister Kay was just here for a brief visit, so I coerced her into baking her Key Lime Pie while I took pictures. Our baking adventure started out like this:
Kay: “I’m not sure how would be the best way to juice the limes.”
Me: “I’ve got one of those metal squeezy things…. or a reamer… or even a glass dish with a built-in reamer. Here, let’s try this metal lemon juicer.” (I pull it out of the drawer and proceed to try it.)
Me: “See? It works perfectly.”
Kay: “I see that, even though you’re doing it upside-down.”
Me: “What?!?! That’s not upside down. What do you mean? So how would you do it?”
Kay: “The other way, with the lime-half flipped over.”
Me: “Hm-m-m. I don’t know about that, but I have an idea. Let’s ask my readers. They can vote.”
So without telling you which way each of us does it, tell me which way is right, according to you. We have something important riding on this so puh-lease say it’s my way.
Back to the pie.
I like Kay’s recipe because it is baked. No raw eggs (although that doesn’t bother me so much, we do have a pregnant mom in the family). But it does contain the traditional sweetened condensed milk to balance the tartness of the limes.
The texture is similar to cheesecake, but there’s no cheese in the ingredient list. It’s not a cream pie, like banana cream or vanilla cream, but it’s also not an unbaked icebox pie. The only whipping cream involved is added on top, so it’s easier to control the calories.
Plan ahead. This pie needs to be chilled at least 2-3 hours. My sister claims it’s even better the next day. Good luck with that!
- 1-1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs (about 20 squares)
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- ½ cup butter, melted
- 4 eggs, separated
- 1 can sweetened condensed milk
- ⅓ cup fresh-squeezed key lime juice
- 9-inch graham cracker pie crust (purchased or homemade)
- 1 cup heavy cream, whipped with ⅓ cup powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Crush crackers using food processor or blender. Add sugar and melted butter. Pulse until mixed.
- Press into 9-inch pie shell.
- Bake at 300 degrees for 8 minutes.
- Beat 3 egg whites in a small bowl until stiff. Set aside.
- You can use the same beaters to beat 4 egg yolks and 1 egg white in a separate medium-sized bowl until thick and light-colored.
- Add milk to egg yolks and mix well. Add juice and continue to beat until thick.
- Add beaten egg whites to egg-yolk mixture and mix gently just until evenly distributed. Don't over mix. Stop when there are no more obvious lumps of egg whites. Carefully pour into baked pie shell.
- Bake at 325 degrees for 10-15 minutes.
- When cooled, refrigerate for 2-3 hours.
- Garnish with whipped cream when serving.
P.S. Kay isn’t sure where she got this recipe. Apologies to the creator. The graham cracker crust comes from Helen Corbitt’s Cookbook.