Sunday, May 24, 2009

Creamiest Lime Cream Meringue Pie

I am so happy to be done with dieting (for now) and back to baking decadent, indulgent desserts. I missed my butter and cream! This was AWESOME! It was a a big hit with Sunday dinner tonight.

My sister's sweet mother-in-law, Sheryl, sent me this amazing cookbook. Dorie Greenspan is a genius. You'll be seeing more from her book on this blog- I can promise you that. Thanks Sheryl!!

Creamiest Lime Cream Meringue Pie
- makes 8 servings -


For the Filling
1 9-inch graham cracker crust, fully baked and cooled

1 cup sugar

Grated zest of 3 limes

4 large eggs, preferably at room temperature

3/4 cup fresh lime juice (from about 6 limes)

A 1-inch chunk of fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated

2 teaspoons cornstarch

2 1/2 sticks (10 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon-size pieces, at room temperature

For the Meringue
4 large egg whites, at room temperature

1/2 cup sugar

1. Have an instant-read thermometer, a strainer and a blender (first choice) or a food processor at hand. Bring a few inches of water to a simmer in a saucepan.

2. Put the sugar and zest into a heatproof bowl that can be set over the pan of simmering water. Off the heat, rub the sugar and zest between your fingertips for few minutes, until the sugar is moist and the fragrance of lime is strong. Whisk the eggs, then whisk in the juice, ginger and cornstarch.

3. Set the bowl over the pan and start stirring with the whisk as soon as the mixture feels tepid to the touch. Cook the lime cream until it reaches 180 degrees F. As whisk—you must whisk constantly to keep the eggs from scrambling—you'll see that the cream will start out light and foamy, then the bubbles will get bigger, and then, as it gets closer to 180 degrees F, it will start to thicken and the whisk will leave tracks. Heads up at this point—the tracks mean the cream is almost ready. Don't stop whisking or checking the temperature, and have patience—depending on how much heat you're giving the cream, getting it to the temperature can take as long as 10 minutes.

4. As soon as it reaches 180 degrees F, remove the cream from the heat and strain the cream into the container of the blender (or food processor); discard the zest. Let it cool until it reaches 140 degrees F, about 10 minutes.

5. Turn the blender to high speed (or turn on the processor) and add the butter a few pieces at a time. Scrape down the sides of the container as needed as you incorporate the butter. After all the butter is in, continue to blend the cream for another 3 minutes. If you find the machine is getting really hot, work in 1-minute intervals, giving the machine a little rest between beats.

6. Pour the cream into a container, press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface and refrigerate the cream for at least 4 hours, or overnight. (The cream can be packed airtight and and frozen for up to 2 months; thaw overnight in the refrigerator.)

To Finish the Pie with Meringue
1. Preheat the broiler.

2. Whisk the cream to loosen it and spoon it into the pie shell. Place the pie plate on a baking sheet.

3. Working in a clean dry mixer bowl with the clean whisk attachment, or in a large bowl 1ith a hand mixer, whip the egg whites at medium speed until opaque. With the mixer running, add the sugar in a slow stream and continue to beat until the whites are glossy and form firm peaks.

4. Spread the meringue over the lime filling, swirling it if you'd like. Make sure the meringue comes all the way to the edges of the crust, because it will shrink when it bakes.

5. Run the pie under the broiler until the meringue is golden and the tips are dark brown. (Or, if you've got a blowtorch, use it to brown the meringue.) Remove the pie from the oven and let it cool for about 15 minutes, then refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving.

Graham Cracker Crust
- makes a 9-inch crust -

1 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs

3 tablespoons sugar

Pinch of salt

1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted

1. Butter a 9-inch pie plate.

2. Stir the crumbs, sugar and salt together in a medium bowl. Pour over the melted butter and stir until all of the dry ingredients are uniformly moist. (I do this with my fingers.) Turn the ingredients into the pan and use your fingers to pay an even layer of crumbs over the bottom of the pan. Put the pan in the freezer while you preheat the oven. (The crust can be covered and frozen for up to 2 months.)

3. Center a rack in the over, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and place the pan on a baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes. Set the crust aside to cool on a rack.

Mmmmm.... rib-eye steaks for dinner. Rib-eyes could quite possibly be my new favorite cut of meat. We used Daddy Hinkel's southwest rub and sauce. (I'm pretty sure it's a favorite of the Codd family. Now it's a favorite of the Fields family, too.)


jayne said...

Hinckels is a favorite of the crooks now too---thanks to the codds! Pork chops are really yummy in that stuff too. Chicken isn't that great.

Sheryl said...

I love that you jumped right into the book! I am so glad you like it! This looks absolutely yummy! As soon as I learned of the book, and started using it, I bought it for all my girls, and since you have brought back the culinary interests in my life and are the domestic goddess that you are, you were on the list of must haves! Love you!

Carole said...

You are the most domestic goddess of all domestic goddesses without a doubt!!! I am so proud of you and all you are so successful at. Just give you a challenge, and you get it done. That's why the Lord gave you this new calling. You will take the ball and run with it. I wish you had been my Enrichment Counselor. Wow! We would have made a team, huh?
Are you okay? I love you my sweet Katherine. Don't over do.
Grandma XO

zoe said...

Pretty photos!! Love it!

♥peachkins♥ said...

Hi. It's my first time here and I read some of your posts.This pie looks yummy..

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