This week's Tuesdays With Dorie recipe was selected by Dianne of Dianne's Dishes, and I have to say I was SO glad to see that she had picked Dorie's "Florida Pie." I love lime, love coconut, love cold and tart anything, so I was really looking forward to making this one.
The pie was pretty easy to put together, however I got distracted by one of my kids (can't remember which, so I can't blame one in particular) and as a result my meringue was overbeaten and kind of dry. It sort of resembled polyfil - that fluffy stuff you find inside pillows and stuffed animals. So the top of my pie didn't have smooth, elegant swoops of meringue as much as it had sweepings from the groomer's floor after she'd trimmed the coat of a white poodle.
But enough of that. It still tasted really, really good.
1 9-inch graham cracker crust (page 235), fully baked and cooled, or a store-bought crust
1 1/3 cups heavy cream
1 1/2 cups shredded sweetened coconut
4 large eggs, seperated
1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup fresh Key (or regular) lime juice (from about 5 regular limes)
1/4 cup of sugar
Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Put the pie plate on a baking sheet lined with parchment of a silicone mat. (I used a springform pan for some reason. I think I like to make things just a bit more complicated than they need to be.)
Put the cream and 1 cup of the coconut in a small saucepan and bring it to a boil over medium-low heat, stirring almost constantly.
Continue to cook and stir until the cream is reduced by half and the mixture is slightly thickened.
Scrape the coconut cream into a bowl and set it aside while you prepare the lime filling.
Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl beat the egg yolks at high speed until thick and pale. Reduce the mixer speed to low and beat in the condensed milk. Still on low, add half of the lime juice. When it is incorporated, add the reaming juice, again mixing until it is blended. Spread the coconut cream in the bottom of the graham cracker crust,
and pour over the lime filling.
Bake the pie for 12 minutes. Transfer the pie to a cooling rack and cool for 15 minutes, then freeze the pie for at least 1 hour.
To Finish the Pie with Meringue:
Put the 4 egg whites and the sugar in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan and heat over medium-low heat, whisking all the while, until the whites are hot to the touch. Transfer the whites to a stand mixer, fitted with the whisk attachment, or use a hand mixer in a large bowl, and beat the whites at high speed until they reach room temperature and hold firm peaks. (Don't overbeat or you'll end up with poodle hair!) Using a rubber spatula, fold the remaining 1/2 cup coconut into the meringue.
Spread the meringue over the top of the pie, and run the pie under the broiler until the top of the meringue is golden brown. (Keep an eye on it - if you get called away, for instance, by your daughter who wants to get out of the bath NOW, bribe her to stay put until you take the pie out of the oven. It burns quickly, and some of your golden brown will become blackened black.)
(Or, if you've got a blowtorch, you can use it to brown the meringue.) Return the pie to the freezer for another 30 minutes or for up to 3 hours before serving.
Dorie also suggest you let the pie sit at room temp for about half an hour before serving, so it will be cold but not frozen solid when you serve it.
My taste-testers were Bill and Alex - Julia was in bed early for a variety of reasons.
Alex also helped out with some slice-of-pie shots...
Alex, to his credit, tried to like the pie. He likes pie, he likes citrus, and he likes coconut. But despite his open-mindedness, he just does not like white creamy foods. He didn't like the meringue (because he's not a fan of poodle fur on food), so we scraped that off. And he had several bites of the pie and then, very reluctantly, he admitted he didn't really like it. I know it's a texture thing with him. But at least he tried it.
Bill LOVED this pie. And as for me? I loved it. And it would be really delicious without the coconut, if you're not a fan. But I love the chewy layer of coconut on top of the crust, and the icy cold lime filling is lovely. I think I'd like to intensify the lime flavor next time around - maybe some lime zest in the filling. Florida Pie would be perfect on a very warm summer evening. Outside. On the deck. I will definitely make this one again. Yum!
Oh - and don't forget to go check out how all the other Tuesdays With Dorie bakers did with this one!