I know this isn't the traditional way to eat a key lime pie (with a meringue top) but when your hubby suggests it two days before his birthday, you just can't say no. I am so glad that I gave it a try! I have made a more traditional Key Lime Pie, and it was delish, but not quite what we were looking for. I have also made a Lemon Meringue Pie that is to die for, so hubbs suggested I just subbed out the lemon for lime in the Lemon Meringue Recipe, and we ended up with this amazing version of Key Lime Pie. It is served with a graham cracker crust and has a perfectly tart filling topped off by the sweet crunch of meringue. So good...I can't wait to make it again!
Key Lime Meringue Pie
3 egg whites
2 t. cream of tartar
1/2 t. vanilla
6 Tbs. sugar
Beat egg whites with cream of tartar and vanilla until foamy and about double in volume. Soft peaks will begin to form. Gradually add sugar one Tablespoon at a time, beating at highest speed until sugar dissolves and meringue forms firm peaks. The color at this time will also change from white to glossy.
I used a store bought graham cracker crust, but you could make one homemade if you are ambitious!
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 Tbs. cornstarch
3 Tbs. flour
1 1/2 cups HOT water
3 slightly beaten egg yolks
2 Tbs. butter
1/2 cup key lime juice (I used a garlic press to squeeze the limes...perfect!)
After making the meringue and setting it to the side: Mix the sugar, cornstarch, flour, and salt in a sauce pan and gradually add hot water, stirring constantly. Cook and stir over high heat until mixture boils. Reduce heat and continue to cook and stir for 2 minutes more. (Make sure that you do the full 2 minute cooking times, this allows the fillings to cook and hold its shaped when cooled).
After the mixture has cooked for the above 2 minutes, crack eggs yolks into a DIFFERENT BOWL. Add a small amount of hot mixture to gradually temper the eggs. (Temper=slowly warm up the eggs before adding them to the boiling mixture, if they are added while cold they will immediately cook, yuck!) Then add the eggs to the boiling mixture and bring to a boil again. Cook and Stir for 2 minutes. Remove the hot mixture from the heat and add butter and lime juice. Stir until well blended (the butter will be melted).
Pour the hot mixture into the pie shell.
Spread meringue over pie fillings making sure to seal the edges completely to the shell to prevent shrinking. We used a small spatula and plopped ping pong ball sizes of meringue on top, then smoothed so there were no holes. I felt like we were getting TOO close to the edges, I was wrong! Exaggerate sealing the meringue to the shell!
Bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes or until meringue is a delicate brown. Allow pie to cool for AT LEAST 4 hours on rack away from a draft.
Serve and be amazed!
Recipe adapted from Laurel