Lime pie and its friends

Lemon meringue pie, key lime pie, or The Amazing Lee Bros. Sour Orange Pie. They seem like large endeavors, and that tricky meringue to boot, right? Here’s what I recently learned: there are two ways [there’s a 3d way — frozen, see Nora Ephron] of making these citrus pies: the complicated-curd-on-a-stove-whisk-in-butter way (which is not *that* hard, just a wee stressful tempering the eggs) or the super-simple: mix some juice with sweetened condensed milk and egg yolks, and you’re good to go. Every single time it sets up right!

And then instead of meringue — whipping the egg whites and broiling or tracking down a torch (yeah, right!), just whip some heavy cream with a bit of confectioners sugar and plop it on top and into the refrigerator and you’re done! And besides, doesn’t everyone prefer to see whipped cream on the pie set before them?! Indeed.

So here’s the technique: Juice some limes (or lemons or sour oranges), crack some eggs and separate to use 5 yolks, stir in some sweetened condensed milk and put into pre-baked pie shell and bake for oh, 15 minutes. Remove from oven to let it set for about 1/2 hour, and then pop into the refrigerator and add your whipped cream perhaps with some appropriate zest decorating the top.

What to do with the whites? Coconut macaroons are an easy choice. I’m thinking if I can dig up a recipe I came across, oh here it is! chocolate pavlova with chocolate mousse. Because it’s spring and a girl can’t help but keep her winter poundage! Or to not get into an endless cycle of using yolks, then whites in a recipe that also calls for yolks, then having leftover whites . . . try this or this which features whipped cream with mascarpone on top, a fave of mine, or perhaps Nigella’s coffee pavlova.

Here’s my recipe for Lime Ginger Cream Pie

Preheat oven to 350 degrees (standard or convection oven)

juice of 6 limes, about 3/4 c, strained
1” piece of ginger, peeled and finely grated
5 egg yolks
14oz can sweetened condensed milk

Crust:
1-1/2 c almond flour

3 T sugar
pinch salt

3 T (1.5 oz) butter, melted [or 1-3/4 c almond flour with 2 oz butter for insurance that crust is not skimpy if you use a larger pie plate]

Combine almond flour, sugar, salt with whisk in a bowl, then stir in melted butter. A pastry blender and a spatula work here. Press contents into pie pan, and bake about 20+ mins until just turning golden.  Remove from oven and either let cool, or jump on in and make the filling.

Put pie dish on a sheet pan.
Juice and strain limes into measuring cup. Add grated ginger.
Separate egg yolks, putting yolks into large-ish bowl.  Whisk egg yolks 1 minute or so by hand. Stir in condensed milk and whisk to combine well, then stir in juice. Mix it all around, and then pour into pie shell.

Put pie pan on sheet pan into oven, and bake about 15-20 minutes, until it’s just starting to set. Put on cooling rack and let cool for at least one hour.  Then cover and refrigerate for at least four hours or overnight. Best within 24 hours, but it’s fine sitting around and waiting for its whipped cream topping.

Whip 1 pint (or less) heavy cream until getting thick, then add a couple T confectioners sugar and whip to soft or medium peaks (not firm! — too dry).  Top chilled pie with cream, and grate some appropriate zest on top and serve.

Sources:
The Life I picked blog
Bittman How to Cook Everything (ten? year anniversary edition) — lime pie

p.s. Here’s another variation

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