June 8, 2008

Blow out your flip flop

Since my trip back to the Sunshine State, I've had Florida on the brain. I'll be going about my business and suddenly the first few notes of "Margaritaville" are playing in my head. Don't get me wrong California is a great, but I can't help but pine for the soft air and laid back attitude of my home town. Luckily my new bible, Baking From My Home to Yours, had the cure- Florida Pie.

You can tell Dorie Greenspan spent time in Florida because her combination of key lime and coconut cream was the perfect antidote for my homesickness. Truth be told, I was so eager to get busy eating this pie, I used store bought crust. Next time, and there will definitely be a next time (real soon!) I will make the graham cracker crust from page 235. I was thrilled to find key limes in the grocery store.

You'll need a around 15 of them to get 1/2 cup of juice- and those little guys are tough to squeeze! Also, I accidentally bought whipping cream instead of heavy cream but after about minutes of whisking it set up quite well. One bite of this pie and

"Wastin' away again in Margaritaville, searchin' for my lost shaker of salt..."

Florida Pie
Baking From My Home to Yours, Dorie Greenspan
1 9inch graham cracker crust fully baked and cooled, or store bought crust
1 1/3 cups heavy cream
1 1/2 cups shredded sweetened coconut
4 large eggs separated
1 14oz can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup fresh key lime (or regular lime) juice
1/4 cup sugar

Preheat the oven to 350F. Put the pie plate on a lined baking sheet.

Put the cream and 1 cup of coconut in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-low heat stirring almost constantly. Cook and stir until cream is reduced by half and slightly thickened. Scrape into a bowl and set aside.

Working with a stand up mixer, or hand mixer in a large bowl, beat egg yolks on high speed until thick and pale. Reduce speed to low and add condensed milk, then half the lime juice. When incorporated, and the remaining juice and mix until blended. Spread the coconut cream in the bottom of the 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 an hour.

To finish the pie with meringue:
Preheat the broiler. Put the four egg whites and sugar in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan and heat over medium-low, whisking all the while, until whites are hot to the touch. Transfer the whites to a stand mixer or use a hand mixer in a large bowl, and beat at high speed until they reach room temperature and hold firm peaks. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the remaining 1/2 cup of coconut. Spread the meringue over the top of the pie and run under the broiler until the meringue is golden brown (or you can use a blowtorch.) Return the pie to the freezer for another 30 minutes or for up to 3 hours before serving.