July 9, 2013

NPR Lemon-Lime Pie

An email a while back from my sister, "Heard this lemon pie story on NPR and it sounds delicious and easy."  For those of you who may not be fluent in "big sister", allow me to translate:  "Can you make this pie for me - because I'm lazy and besides, you love to bake anyways." Luckily for her she's right, on both counts.

I was definitely intrigued by the recipe for Atlantic Beach Pie.  The filling is similar to one for key lime pie and requires basically only three ingredients: condensed milk, egg yolks and fresh lemon or lime juice.  The twist is the crust that's made with saltine crackers.  Hmmmm...salty and sweet - definitely promising.  

Could a pie this easy to make with so few ingredients be the real deal?  I had my reservations, but when I brought it to a recent family BBQ it was unanimously given the thumbs up.  Almost unheard of from such a large group of self-appointed food critics.

The tart filling wasn't as sweet as I had thought and the salty cracker crust was the perfect counter balance to it.  I think it's an ideal dessert after a heavy meal.   I'll definitely be making it again and again!  Could this be a case of "sister knows best"?  I shudder to think...lol!

Atlantic Beach Pie

Makes one pie

For the crust:
1 1/2 sleeves of saltine crackers
1/2 cup (1 stick) softened unsalted butter
3 tablespoons sugar

For the filling:
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
4 egg yolks
1/2 cup lemon or lime juice or a mix of the two

Fresh whipped cream and coarse sea salt for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Crush the crackers finely, but not to dust. You can use a food processor or your hands. Add the sugar, then knead in the butter until the crumbs hold together like dough. Press into an 8 inch pie pan. Chill for 15 minutes, then bake for 18 minutes or until the crust colors a little.

While the crust is cooling (it doesn't need to be cold), beat the egg yolks into the milk, then beat in the citrus juice. It is important to completely combine these ingredients. Pour into the shell and bake for 16 minutes until the filling has set.

The pie needs to be completely cold to be sliced. Serve with fresh whipped cream and a sprinkling of sea salt.


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