Sunday, May 27, 2012

Lost And Found And Key Lime Pie

Well, as promised, here's my recipe for key lime pie.
Can't read it?
I know.
I'll give it to you further down the page. I will.

It's Sunday morning and I'm not in an especially good mood. It's hot already. I'm sorry. I should either quit talking about the heat or move to Vermont. Maybe Alaska. I don't know.

Subtropical Storm Beryl is supposed to hit the east coast of Florida tonight, maybe, and that should bring us some rain. I'm hoping. I don't even know what a subtropical storm is and I think they just invented this shit when global warming moved the hurricane season up a month.
I could be wrong.
I probably am.

Okay- here's a mystery: Where did the giant Pence in my wallet come from? I always keep a few pesos in there because, well, what if I suddenly find myself magically transported to Mexico?
(I wish.)
But a little while back I suddenly discovered that coin you see above in the change part of my wallet. I don't even know what country it's from. Great Britain? Y'all help me out here. On the back it says, "One Pence" and "1962".
Don't you think I'd remember when I came into possession of this pence?
I must have consciously put it in there. I really don't think that the Pence Fairy did it.
But I swear- I do not remember.

I also keep finding silverware in my silverware drawer that is not mine. Several spoons, a knife.
I'm used to things disappearing but what's up with this sudden and mysterious appearing?

Am I losing my mind?

Quite possibly.

I feel certain that someone is going to read this and think, "I gave Mary that coin. And she doesn't remember. God. She is really losing it." So if you gave it to me, go ahead and tell me. I'll laugh and say, "Oh yeah. NOW I remember." I'll be lying.

As to the spoons and knife- well, wherever they came from, I can sure use the spoons. My own spoons have disappeared at an alarming rate until I am down to about two which every mother can understand. Spoons are the universal default tool for children and their projects.
So- to whoever left those spoons in my kitchen- Thanks!
Also, for the pence. I have a slight feeling that maybe one of you DID give it to me. If so, go ahead and remind me. It's sort of magical to think that it just appeared in my wallet but it's sort of driving me crazy, too.

All right. I better go make those pies. The recipe demands that they be served chilled.

Chilled. What a beautiful word.

Happy Sunday, y'all.

Love...Ms. Moon

Key Lime Pie
(original recipe)

3 eggs, separated
1 can sweetened condensed milk
(Like Eagle Brand)
1/3 cup sugar
3/4 cup key lime juice
1- 9 inch pie shell

Beat egg yolks. Add sweetened condensed milk. Beat again. Add lime juice. Beat 'til smooth.
Put in pie shell. 
Make meringue with whites and sugar. Top pie. 
375 degrees until brown.
Serve chilled.


My family likes their key lime pies made without the meringue but topped with whipped cream. Also, they like a graham-cracker crumb crust instead of a regular pastry pie shell. Or, sometimes, a ginger-snap crumb crust. That's what I'm going to make today. You could even cheat like crazy and buy one of those pre-made graham-cracker crumb crusts but you can also buy pre-smushed graham cracker crumbs in a box. You mix those up with some sugar and melted butter and bake them for a little while. Don't ask me how long. I'm not here to tell you how to make graham-cracker-crumb crusts or ginger-snap-crumb crusts. Look that shit up. 
Now. Here's a problem. They do not advise making anything with raw eggs any more and if you bake the pie to brown the meringue, you will supposedly kill off the salmonella or whatever evil thing lurks in raw eggs and if you don't, if you use the whipped cream (and you better use real whipped cream, okay? not any fake shit) you are not baking the pie. I am of the opinion that the lime juice will kill the nasty bugs if there are any in there but I don't want anyone suing me for advising them to use raw eggs and then getting sick. So. DO NOT BAKE AT YOUR OWN RISK!


And one more thing: If you can't find fresh key limes (which are smaller and rounder than regular limes) you can use any limes. Look for the yellowest ones when you buy them because limes are not really ripe when they are dark green. In reality, ripe limes are sort of yellowish. The riper, the juicier. 
Got that?

This is an exquisite pie. Supposedly it was invented down in the Florida Keys back in the olden days when they had lots of chickens and thus eggs and lots of lime trees but no fresh milk. (Don't ask me.) 
Whatever. It is pretty much to die for and I do not believe there is anyway to make it better by the addition of anything fancy. And it's butt-easy to make with the exception of the work of squeezing the limes. You CAN use bottled lime juice but it's not going to taste the same or as good.
So buy limes and squeeze them.

No. You cannot use fat-free sweetened condensed milk. If you want to save some calories and fat, do the meringue instead of the whipped cream. I am not sure when meringue-topped pies fell in favor but they seem to have. I personally think there is nothing so handsome as a tall peaked and browned meringue and I like the way it tastes, too, but not everyone does.

I understand this.
I am cool with this.

Just sayin'.


  1. Oh my [insert deity's name taken in vain] that looks AMAZING.

    I think sometimes they call "key limes" "Mexican limes" in other places. The smaller and rounder versions. And I have no doubt it won't be the same, but I wonder if that would work too.

    I wonder if there are limes anywhere in all of Azerbaijan? Never seen them. Must search.

  2. NOLA- The limes I see Mexicans using in the Yucatan are what we call "Persian" limes. I've never seen any other type there. Good luck! They must have limes in Azerbaijan. Maybe?

  3. There's a line in Natural Born Killers where Woody Harrelson says, "I'll give that key lime pie a day in court." and for whatever reason, I've adapted that line into my vernacular and over the past many years, I say it when I'm mulling over a choice. Anyway. I love key lime pie but I've never made one myself. I think the key limes are in at Food Lion right now so maybe this week. The recipe looks pretty straightforward... just my type!

  4. Oooo, your recipe card looks like a few in my collection - well-worn and much used (and loved!) I think I'll try your recipe because I do love myself some key lime pie. Plus it'll be a good excuse for my granddaughter and me to bake together. Not that we need one.

    (I read, but don't comment - Grady Doctor chides me for that!)

  5. Aaaaahhhhhhhhhh!!!!! My mama has commented AND you posted the Key Lime Pie recipe???


    I just fainted from excitement.

  6. #2 Son adored key lime pie, and this will be better than the frozen stuff at the store, so i will try it.

    My sympathy on the disappearing flatware. We are excavating #2 Son's man cave, and came up with half the forks and spoons in the house.

    The pence is probably from England, and maybe you got it with change in Mexico, where some Brit was vacationing, too, and the storekeeper or vendor didn't look too hard at the coins. In some countries, small vendors will take just about any major currency or coin.

  7. my grandgirl makes a key lime pie when she comes to visit only she tops hers with blueberries.

  8. Dayna- I have never watched that movie. I just...can't. But what a great line!

    Shugsie- What?! You read my blog? Suddenly, I am wishing that maybe I didn't curse quite so much. Except...well. I do. I am so honored to finally "meet" you. Thanks for visiting and thank-you for commenting! I mean it!

    Gradydoctor- Lord. Me too! Your mama!

    messymimi- The more I think about it, the more I think maybe Photocat sent it to me. I'm not sure. Geez. You could be right.

    Ellen Abbott- That would certainly NOT SUCK! Mango sure would be nice, too. A guava drizzle, perhaps. I think I've done that.

  9. Maybe your house is where all my spoons have migrated off to...

    It is soooo hot here also, humidity wise. I've been trying to walk a mile every day but the last couple of days have only made it 3/4 mile before I'm simply dripping sweat and my face becomes beet red. I would love rain also.

  10. But here where I am now was Persia back in the day and we border on current-day Iran. I'm on a hunt now for some Persian limes! I don't think there's even a word for lime (it's like in Spanish where limon is for both, I think).

    Do you think the pie would work with the limes you had in the Yucatan?

    I'm getting obsessed.

  11. Dear Ms. Moon... I did not give you that Pence. I think you may be a time traveler and not realize it. That is my theory for how you got the Pence at least. And it's hot as hell today even in MN. Hot. As. Hell. I don't like it.

    I have never in my born days had a taste of key lime pie. You're persuading me though.

  12. Rubye Jack- Yep. That's what happens to me when I walk too. Sometimes I almost puke. In the summer, anyway. So I have YOUR spoons? I wouldn't doubt it.

    NOLA- ANY limes would work. I promise you. I used Persian limes today because my Publix didn't have key limes and I was not going to drive back across town. It'll be fine.
    Hell, even LEMONS might work. Whatever.

    Jill- Well, if I am a time traveler, I wish I could remember my journeys. Make a key lime pie, honey. You won't regret it.

  13. Ginger snap crust! Why have i never thought of this? Again my life has been enriched in your sharing with us.

    All the pence and spoons in the world could not amount to all the good you bring.

    I love spoons.

  14. Yep, that's an old British Penny, from before decemilisaton in '71.
    We have a lemon meringue pie which is possibly the same but with lemons? I wouldn't realy know, as I don't know how the "lemony bit" is made . . . only the meringue.
    I might try your pie, it sounds delish.

  15. Ajax- Frankly, I prefer graham crackers. But my kids like ginger snaps.

    bugerlugs- I think most lemon pies are made with a cornstarch and lemon juice base. I think. You should try this one. Thanks for the penny confirmation.

  16. This is what my wife makes. It looks and is so good. Limes are really my favorite fruit for drinks and pies.

  17. Syd- The lime is a wonderful fruit, isn't it? Makes terrific marinades and salad dressings, too.

  18. I am so retarded I really am most untreated in the crust and merengue. This is true of pot pies from childhood too. Just give me the ctrust. In addition to being 'different',' I am a pest... So someday maybe you will tell me your prune cake recipe? Only if and when you feel like it because I try to be a polite pest. Anon Jo

  19. Bless you for the delicious sounding Key Lime Pie recipe, which I have been SO in the mood for. And I'm with your fam; nix the meringue & replace it with whipped cream, yum!

  20. That pie looks mouth-wateringly fabulous. I am saving the recipe for when I can reward myself with something amazing like that.

    As far as the nasty stuff in the egg whites, it's not a bug (the bug that can come with eggs is Salmonella and it is rare, but gives us a good reason for thoroughly washing raw eggs before we use them, especially if the eggs don't come from our own healthy hens), it's a protein called avidin. Avidin binds biotin in our bodies and makes it dysfunctional. Biotin is a cofactor that is absolutely essential for the proper functioning of our cells. However, we do have decent stores of biotin in our bodies and one episode of eating a couple of raw egg whites is not going to do any harm (everything in moderation, as always).

  21. As bugerlugs said, that's an old British penny. It looks nothing like the pennies now in circulation. (Unlike American coins, British coins have changed substantially over the years, especially after decimalization in the early '70s.) I don't think it would even be legal tender now -- but it sure is cool!

  22. So I'm reading this today and printing the recipe, thank you so much, and I say to myself out loud "God, she is so fucking funny" as I chuckle. Thanks SO much for that! I just love you!


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