This is a recipe I saw Jeff Mauro make the other week on Food Network’s The Kitchen. There are only five ingredients! I had dinner out with some friends at a restaurant right beside my apartment building. I had invited everyone to come over for drinks after dinner, and I figured I should have some sort of dessert to serve. In my typical fashion, I thought of this the afternoon before while at work.
I remembered seeing this recipe on The Kitchen, and it seemed like an easy but delicious recipe to prepare. I didn’t want to spend a lot of time making a dessert because I had a lot of work to do around my apartment before people came over.
To be honest, my pie didn’t actually have key limes in it. I had made a stop at the grocery store after work, and I could not find any. In fact, I have never seen key limes in a grocery store where I live. I couldn’t even find bottled key lime juice. I decided to go ahead and make this dessert with regular limes, because I believe you won’t really be able to tell much of a difference. Plus, Jeff Mauro had made a comment about how you can use regular lime juice because it takes so many key limes to get the 1/2 cup of juice.
This pie was incredibly easy to make. I did choose to buy the pre-made graham cracker pie crust, but you could also make your own with graham cracker crumbs and melted butter. The lime part of the pie was very simple. Just make whip cream by beating 1 cup of heavy whipping cream and set aside for a second. In a separate bowl, whisk together one can 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk, two teaspoons of lime zest, and 1/2 cup of lime juice. (Note: the recipe on Food Network says to use one 1 oz can of sweetened condensed milk, but it should be 14 oz). Gently fold this mixture into the whipped cream. Finally, evenly spread the complete mixture into the pie crust and freeze for at least 3-4 hours.
When you are ready to serve, take the other 1 1/2 cups of cream with 1/2 cup of powdered sugar and beat until there are stiff peaks. You know it is ready when it turns fluffy and you don’t see any liquid left. Take the pie out of the freezer and top it with the whipped cream and garnish with more lime zest and lime slices before serving.
A couple notes about this recipe. I also made the whipped cream beforehand and put it in the fridge so I wouldn’t have to pull out my hand mixer when everyone was over. I just pulled the bowl of whipped cream out of the fridge when I was ready to serve, and it worked fine.
Speaking of whipped cream, the homemade whipped cream really made this dessert. I think there are very few things in this world more pleasurable than fresh whipped cream. However, you definitely could use store bought whipped cream, or even Cool Whip.
Finally, DO NOT attempt to put all the whipped cream you make on top of the pie. It is too much and will start to spill over. Jeff Mauro did that on TV and it just stayed there perfectly. That is not what happened with me. It made a mess. The good news is the pie still tasted amazing. It was a hit with my friends, which is how I measure a successful cooking experiment.
Alongside this dish, I served Campari spritz, which is the perfect summer drink. Here is the recipe:
- One part Campari
- Two parts Prosecco
- One part club soda
- orange slices
It is an easy cocktail to put together. Just combine the liquid ingredients in a wine glass (or cocktail glass) and drop an orange slice in it. This is a good cocktail to make for a group, because one you open a bottle of bubbly, you have to finish it.
One thing to beware of is that Campari has a very particular taste, and it is not for everyone. It is very bitter and looks like cough syrup. When I studied abroad in Argentina, my host family just drank it straight. I thought it tasted terrible. They even gave it to me mixed in orange juice, and it was still awful. However, with the sweetness of the Prosecco (could use other bubbly) and the citrus from the orange, the bitterness of the Campari is drastically toned down. The Campari also prevents this drink from being too sweet. This is a favorite for me and my best friend. We just want to drink this all summer long on my balcony.