chocolate crusted key lime pie
PREP TIME 20 mins, COOK TIME 15–20 mins, plus cooling
9oz (250g) chocolate graham crackers
1⁄3 cup sugar
9 tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 large egg yolks
14oz (400g) can condensed milk
cream, to serve
1 Preheat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Crush the graham crackers in a plastic food bag with a rolling pin, or use a food processor. Mix the cracker crumbs and sugar with the butter in a large bowl until it resembles wet sand.
2 Pour the cracker mixture into a 9in (23cm) loose-bottomed tart pan and press it firmly into the bottom and sides of the pan. Make sure the filling is packed as firmly as possible, and that there is a good side to the case so that the filling can be contained, unlike a cheesecake base. Place the tart pan on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.
3 Meanwhile, finely grate the zest of 3 limes into a bowl and, if you like, use a zester to pare long strands of zest from a fourth lime to decorate. Juice all 5 limes and set aside.
4 Place the egg yolks into the bowl with the lime zest, and whisk with an electric whisk until the egg has thickened. Pour in the condensed milk and continue whisking for another 5 minutes. Add
the lime juice and whisk again until it is incorporated. Pour the mixture into the pan and bake for 15–20 minutes, or until set but still wobbly in the center.
5 Remove the pie from the oven and leave it to cool completely. Serve the pie decorated with the fine strands of lime zest, if using, and accompanied by cream.
A common baking mistake with deep-filled sweet tarts is to overcook them. Remove them from the oven when they still have a slight wobble to them at the center. They will cool and set to an unctuous, creamy texture. Overcooking will result in a tart with an unpleasantly “rubbery” texture.