Posts Tagged ‘real key lime pie’

Sunday sweets- a Southern treat

Posted on: May 31st, 2009 by admin 2 Comments

Key lime pie

Is named after the small key limes that are naturalized throughout the Florida Keys. With a thin yellow rind, key limes are more tart and aromatic than the common limes seen year round in most grocery stores. Key lime pie is also made with canned sweetened condensed milk, since fresh milk was not common in the Florida Keys before modern refrigeration.


Key lime juice is pale yellow. Some people add food coloring to give the pie filling a green colour, but this practice is definitely frowned upon by those who make traditional key lime pies. Also the filling used to be uncooked, as the lime juice and the condensed milk reacted and thickened the mix, but with raw eggs, there was a bit of a health scare, so now it’s cooked just a little. Speaking of traditional, some say a key lime pie should have meringue on top and others say no no. We’ll give you the option to choose!

  • 1/2 c key lime juice (obviously you can use regular lime juice, key limes can be hard to find, but if you do- you’ll need 10-12)
  • 400ml (14 oz) (1 can) sweetened condensed milk
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 2 tsp lime zest
  • 22 cm (9 in) pie crust (you can use a graham cracker/butter crust, pre-bought frozen pie crusts or make you own using this recipe)
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
  • 6 Tbsp sugar

Preheat the oven to 180ºC (350ºF) lightly grease a pie tin and prepare whatever base you’re using.

Beat the egg yolks until they are thick and have turned light yellow, don’t over mix. Add sweetened condensed milk. Start mixing at a low speed and add half the lime juice mixing just until incorporated add the remaining lime juice and lime zest, continue mixing just until blended, only a few seconds.

Pour the mix into the pie crust, and now prepare the meringue (If you don’t want meringue, just skip this step and go straight to the baking). Beat the egg whites and cream of tartar until soft peaks form and then slowly beat in the sugar a little at a time. When the mix is smooth when you rub a little between you fingers, heap the meringue ontop of the lime mix making sure you spread it all the way to the edge, or it will shrink away from the edge otherwise.

Bake for 10 – 15 minutes, until the meringue peaks show just a hint of gold. Serve at room temperature. Or without the meringue- a little chilled. The perfect end to a southern feast.

Recipe adapted from Jeff O’Neill.  This refreshing Key Lime Pie is the most requested dessert on the menu at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida.