Thursday, August 4, 2011

Four Pies

I don't have too many words this time.  Here is what July looked like:

One of my first successful lattice crusts.  I always stay away from blueberry pie, but blueberries were on sale and they looked so pretty.  I am glad I bought them because it turns out, homemade blueberry pie is delicious!  I bought way too many, so that's why I made this:

Not such a great pie.  It was inspired by a Rose Levy Berenbaum pie, but I didn't have her recipe.  It's lemon curd in a flaky crust with blueberry topping.  I tried the crust recipe in this month's issue of Bon Appétit.  It was flaky and buttery but not very tender.  I also found out that I only like lemon curd in small servings.

This pie has a secret.  Under the layer of glazed, raw strawberries, is a layer of cooked strawberries, and under that, is a silky, creamy, white chocolate layer.  The raw strawberries make it easy to convince yourself that leftovers make a decently wholesome breakfast.

There are no photos of the fourth pie; it was devoured before I thought to take any.  This is the pie I want to share with you.  It's a frozen key lime pie, and its advantages are many: the graham cracker crust is one of the easiest crusts to prepare; it has only four ingredients; since it's a frozen pie, you can make it ahead of time and keep it in your freezer for up to three months (how it could remain untouched for that long is beyond me, but you could make two at a time, eat one that night and have one on hand for dessert emergencies).

Frozen Key Lime Pie adapted from the Good Housekeeping Cookbook

Graham Cracker Crust (recipe below)
4 limes (even though it's called a key lime pie, you just use regular limes)
1 can of sweetened condensed milk (14oz)
1 cup of heavy whipping cream

First, zest the limes to get one tablespoon of finely chopped/grated zest.  Then juice the limes so that you have 1/2 cup of juice.

In a large bowl, whisk the lime juice with the condensed milk until smooth.

In a different bowl, beat the heavy cream with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form.  It should take about 10 minutes.  You then fold the whipped cream into the condensed milk mixture.  Do this slowly, taking only 1/3 of the cream at a time.  Gently mix it in until evenly blended.

Pour into your fully cooled graham cracker crust.  Cover tightly and freeze for at least one hour and up to three months.  Sprinkle some long strips of lime zest in the center of the pie right before serving for a pretty garnish.

Graham Cracker Crust

1 1/3 cups graham cracker crumbs (basically, one sleeve of graham crackers)
2 T sugar
5 T unsalted butter, melted

Combine the sugar with the graham cracker crumbs.  Stir in the melted butter until it is fully incorporated.  Press mixture evenly into your 9 inch pie pan.

Chill the crust for 30 minutes while you are preheating your oven to 350 degrees. Bake the crust for 8-10 minutes until it lightly colors.  Allow to cool completely before filling.

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