Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Creamy Lime Pies

This week's assignment for my weekly on-line baking club, Tuesdays with Dorie, was Creamy Lime Pie. It really was the creamiest and dreamiest lime pie. But I'll never make it again. Never, ever. Oh, the hassle and the mess! First you whisk the lime custard over a bowl of gently simmering water, hoping that it will reach 180 degrees on your akwardly dangling candy thermometer that clanks into your whisk every time you circle by. After twenty-three minutes, yes, twenty-three minutes, I had the heat cranked up to high, the water boiling furiously (and this in the middle of August), as I continued to whisk. I think I hit 175 degrees at best, and hung up my gloves. Then the hot mixture must be strained into the food processor, and if you're me, then you lose a few globs of custard on the way in. And a few more globs on the way back to the saucepan. And by the time I was done with this custard, I had Creamy Lime Chaos all over the kitchen. And to think, I probably had less mess than most, since I didn't make crust. I had itty bitty purchased graham cracker pie tins in my cupboard, leftover from a mini cheesecake class I taught at church. So at that point, after scrubbing up the kitchen counters and washing the pans, and zesters, and juicers, and strainers, and food processor, I almost quit. But the pie was supposed to be topped with a billowy meringue. Normally when I make key lime pie, you use the egg yolks in the custard and the whites for the meringue. Sigh. Lovely and economical. Not so with Creamy Lime Pie. Whole eggs go into the custard and so you must begin again with egg whites. It always bothers me to be lopsided like that. I know how to use extra yolks and extra whites, but I really prefer it to all come out even and symmetrical. So I went with a whipped cream a topping, and a little sprinkle of lime zest. The pies were superb, heavenly, ethereal. But I'll never make them again. And if you decided to make them, give yourself plenty of time. And Formula 409. And Palmolive.
This will make it look easy:
Click here for the recipe, plus gorgeous photos.
Next Up:
The Very Best Grilled Pork Chop with Grilled Peaches

16 comments:

The Japanese Redneck said...

They do look good, but I'm with you...they are labor intensive. I like quick and easy myself.

Ramona

Christina said...

I make a mess out of the kitchen, so I'd hate this one as well!

Jennifer said...

I'm so sorry it was so labor intensive! I skipped out on this one...maybe it was a good week to do that!

Ali said...

That's a shame. If you ever decide to try lime again, give Ina Garten's Key Lime a try. Tasty and not a huge hastle...

Mary Ann said...

Prudy- you are cracking me up with this post! I just really had to laugh.
love your mini's.

chocolatechic said...

So funny.

So glad it wasn't me.

Adrienne said...

Way to stick to it. Funny story about graham cracker crusts. My dad made a cheesecake for my little sister's birthday on Sunday. They ran out of graham crackers and since it was Sunday they couldn't run out and buy any. So they improvised with Froot Loops! Apparently it tasted fine, it was just a mottled red and green graham cracker crust.

Denise said...

So how do you REALLY feel about this recipe?? =)

You make me laugh!!! I appreciate honesty-- less frustrating for me in the kitchen!

Thanks for all you do, friend!

crabigail adams said...

Labor intensive is BAD. Cleaning up is BAD. Slaving over a hot stove all day is BAD...

...but those sure look GOOD!!!

Emily said...

These look pretty cute. I prefer whipped cream over meringue, anyway.

Katrina said...

Sorry you had such a time with this! I don't know why as I know many others have complained, but my cream came to temperature in only 9 minutes (also with the water in the boiler at a good rumble.) But then I decided after making the cream that the boys just wouldn't like a meringue pie, so I added cream and half and half to the lime cream and made ice cream with it! (Only used 1 stick of butter). It's pretty good ice cream, but I'm with you. I probably will never make this again! Your little pies LOOK great!

Linda said...

After all that you went through, I'm happy to hear that you were at least able to enjoy the pie!

Dawn said...

I hate to say this but I do love some labor intensive foods--pastries and the like. Makes me concentrate more. But there are some days I do not.
But these came out great my dear.

Marie said...

Hassle or not, they look fabulous. I opted out this week, and am glad I did. I was not in the mood for labour intensive anything!

~melly said...

man, screw that. my work-to-yum ratio doesn't pan on this one, so i stick withmy standard, redneck icebox pie: one regular sized tub of whipped topping, one can of frozen limeade concentrate, one block of cream cheese, one can of sweetened condensed milk. put in a bowl, beat with a mixer (or a whisk, if your arms are up to the challenge) until smooth, and scrape/pour into two graham cracker crusts. place in refrigerator to make sure they're really set hard if you want to, and then top with whipped topping, or whipped cream.

make any variations you like: use lemonade, use frozen tropical drink mixes, heck, throw in a shot of tequila for a margarita pie! (YUM).

versatile, easy, and .. man, seriously, it's REALLY yummy. i NEVER take any home. it's all eaten, down to the last crumb. best of all? one bowl. no shifting, no heat, no nothing. total. nothing else required. that right there is the bomb-diggety.

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