Key Lime Test Kitchen

Earlier this summer I had a go at key lime pie.  I used a recipe that my aunt had used a few years back from a Betty Crocker Cookbook that has some truly great desserts.  I whipped up the key lime zest and juice with some cream cheese, threw it in the freezer, and proceeded to enjoy a pie that had the weight of a brick.  This pie just wasn’t enough, I needed a classic key lime pie.

I had never gone the custard route before, but it was time to get over my fear.  As I flipped through the pages of How to Be a Domestic Goddess, I saw a recipe for mini key lime pies.  When you live with only one other person, it’s hard to rally to make a cake or a pie, but something bite size?  Well, that you can justify.

How to be a Domestic Goddess

I read through Nigella’s recipe, and I had some questions.  Pulse the butter with the graham cracker when it’s cold?  How many of my little key limes would amount to the zest and juice of 2 limes?  Do I really only need 7 ounces of condensed milk?

Because this was something I’d never done (at least the real way) before, I decided to consult Mark Bittman.  He knows How to Cook Everything, surely he could tell me.

How to Cook Everything

A note—I have never followed a recipe out of his book, but anytime I have a question, I consult him first.  Odd?  I think so.

I pulled it out and looked at his recipe.  But I had just returned from Savannah and I knew Paula made a key lime pie, so I decided to turn to The Lady as well.  And then it just didn’t seem right to leave Ina out of the equation.

3 Cookbooks

5 cookbooks later, all was said and done, and I had tried 4 new things:

  • cutting the butter into little pieces to make the crust (it always looks good on cooking shows)

Pats of Butter

  • setting out my mise en place (which included a grasshopper brownie) so I would be standing with eggs at the ready

Mise En Place

  • cranking my mixer all the way up

Mixer on 10

  • making a key lime pie that uses a custard


And I used a total of 5 cookbooks to make sure my pie would come out okay.

It was delicious.

The reason for this post is two-fold:

  • It’s all about trying new things in the kitchen.
  • I never took a picture of the finished product.

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