Perfection for a hot 4th of July party!
It may be a sin to mess with a classic … I know! But I love limes and wanted to deepen the taste of the key lime in the pie. So mess away I did! I started by adding lots of lime zest to the filling and the graham cracker crust. Absolutely love the fleck of green in the filling!
But, as we know, presentation often is everything. So, this year, I pushed the graham cracker crust up high in a spring form pan so that once the pie was finished the crust would rise jaggedly above the filling. Then, I marbled the filling for that extra wow factor. Please let me know what you think!
Ingredients for 9″ graham cracker pie crust:
15 graham crackers (each 3 by 5 inches), broken
1⁄3 c. packed brown sugar
6 T. unsalted butter, melted, (plus more, room temperature to grease the pan)
Zest of 1 lime, finely grated, plus 1 T. fresh juice
1 ¼ t. kosher salt
Ingredients for Key Lime Filling:
1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
3 egg yolks, whites not used.
1/2 c. Nellie & Joe’s key west lime juice
2-3 lg. limes for zest and garnish slices
Whipped cream or meringue
Directions for the crust:
In a food processor, pulse graham crackers until finely ground. Add butter, granulated sugar, lime zest and juice, and salt; pulse until combined. Press crumbs evenly onto the bottom and up the sides of a 9″ spring form pan.
It is a beautiful effect to allow the crust to rise higher than the filling.
Directions for the Pie Filling:
Combine milk, egg yolks and lime juice and the zest of the limes. Blend until smooth. (Pieces of zest should be visible.)
Now you can pour the filling into the graham cracker crust for the classic key lime pie (and skip the next two paragraphs)…
…but, if you want to make it “fancy” and are not adverse to adding a little food color, you can make marble-like swirls in the pie. To do so, measure out 1/4 to 1/3 c. and tint that small separated portion, then pour the rest of the filling into the graham cracker crust.
Take the small portioned bowl of the filling and tint it with very small drops of green and yellow food coloring. (The goal is to create a lime green hue.) Start very small and add as you go.
Once you are happy with the tint, you can start to marble the plain filling in the crust with the tinted lime curd. Gently place unequal spoonfuls of the green tinted curd (in no particular fashion) on top of the plain filling batter, leaving some areas plain. Use a skewer or butter knife to gently and lightly swirl the plain and tinted mixtures together to create a marbled effect.
Bake at 350º for 15 min. Allow to stand 10 min. or longer to cool. Refrigerate to ice cold. Just before serving, top with freshly whipped cream, or meringue, and garnish with lime slices.