Key lime pie is so named because it is prepared with key limes which are native to the Key region in Florida. These limes are pretty different from the commonly available Persian limes which are not recommended for use in key lime pie.
A key lime pie basically calls for 3 ingredients- key lime juice, egg yolks and sweetened condensed milk. The egg whites are used up for the pie by making a meringue to top the pie. A key lime pie can be prepared with either a dough crust or graham cracker crust. So, if you are searching for an authentic key lime pie recipe, you can now end your search here.
1 cup + 4 tablespoons of graham cracker crumbs
6 tablespoons of melted butter
1 cup +2/3rd cups of sweetened condensed milk
3 large egg yolks, at room temperature
2 tablespoons of white granulated sugar
1 tablespoon of grated lime zest
½ cup of fresh or bottled key lime juice
1. Take a large bowl and tip the graham cracker crumbs in it. Melt 6 tablespoons of butter either in the microwave or over the stove and then add that to the graham cracker crumbs. Next, add the granulated white sugar to the graham cracker crumbs and then mix all the ingredients together until the cracker crumbs are moistened and they start coming together.
2. Now take a 9-inch pie pan and grease it thoroughly with butter or cooking spray. Once all the sides and base of the pie pan is nicely greased, tip the cracker crumb mixture into the pie pan and then spread the cracker crumb mixture in the entire pan. Using your fingers press generous amounts of the cracker crumb mixture onto the sides of the pie pan and then cover the entire base of the pie pan with the cracker crumbs. Press the cracker crumbs tightly against the base of the pan with the help of your finger tips and knuckles to get a uniformly thick pie crust.
3. Now break open the three eggs and separate the yolks from the egg whites. Set aside the egg whites and tip the yolks into the bowl of an electric mixer. Set the mixer on medium and beat the eggs until they turn pale yellow in color. Once done, turn down the speed of the mixer to medium low and slowly add the condensed milk to the beaten egg yolks. Once added, beat the mixture for 4-5 minutes or until it turns fluffy and thick. Once the desired consistency is achieved, add the lime zest and key lime juice to the egg and continue beating for another 1-2 minutes.
4. Now fetch the pie crust and pour the pie filling in it. Spread the filling evenly and then insert the pan into a 350 degrees Fahrenheit preheated oven to bake it for 10-15 minutes. Once done, take out the pie from the oven and place it on a wire rack to cool it. Once completely cooled, pop the pie into the refrigerator and let it stay there for 3-4 hours or even overnight. Once the filling sets, top the pie with whipping cream or meringue topping and then cut the pie into wedges to serve.