Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Learn something about Key Lime Pie

Recipe card: Key Lime Pie, Florida's State Pie
Postcard from Stefanie J. thanks!


So, this time I learned about Key Lime Pie. Previously I had never heard of this type of pie, this is because in Indonesia Pie is not too well known. I hope someday I can try this recipe.

Key lime originated in southern Asia and was carried by the Arabs across North Africa into Spain and Portugal. It was sbrought to the Americas by Spanish and Portuguese explorers in the early part of the sixteenth century where it escaped cultivation and becam naturalized in parts of the West Indies, Some Caribbean countries and southern Florida.

Key West, Florida is famous for its fabulous Key Lime Pie, one of America's best-loved regional dishes. Every restaurant in the Florida Keys, and especially in the city of Key West, serves this wonderful pie. There seems to be a key lime pie for every palate, with numerous versions made throughout the region. This pie is considered the official pie of the Florida Keys.

As to who made the first key lime pie, no one really knows for sure as it has never been documented. The most likely story is that William Curry (1821-1896), a ship salvager. The dish named after the small key limes (Citrus aurantifolia "swingle") that are naturalized throughtout the Florida Key.

Made of key lime juice, egg yolks and sweetened condesed milk in a pie crust. The traditional conch version uses the egg whites to make a meringue topping. Key lime juice, unlike regular lime juice, is a pale yellow. The filling in Key Lime Pie is also yellow, largely due to the egg yolks. During mixing, a reaction between the condensed milk and the acidic lime juice occurs which causes the filling to thicken on its own without requiring baking. Many early recipes for Key Lime Pie didnt instruct the cook ever to bake the pie, relying on this chemical reaction (called souring) to produce the proper consistency of the filling. The acid in lime juice actually "cooks" the pie.

Today, in the interest of safety due to consumption of raw eggs, pies of this nature are usually baked for a short time. The baking also thickens the texture more than the reaction alone.

Have a nice day!

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