I originally started this blog as a place to store tried and true recipes for my family. It didn't take long to discover how supportive and fun the blog community was and I became hooked! I rarely create my own recipes, but I still hope you'll enjoy the recipes that I find and tweak a bit.
Any Dexter fans in the house? Gosh I love that show, it's got all the elements I love in entertainment, humor, romance, mystery, serial killers, I can't get enough!
But another thing I like about Dexter is that it's based in Miami, and every once and a while they'll throw bits and pieces in about the culture and the food! One particular episode highlighted the Key Lime Pie and a woman's search to find the perfect one. In it she mentioned that it needed sweetened condensed milk to make it the best. Well, after that I became obsessed, must. make. key lime. pie!
I didn't make an actual pie, but I did find a recipe for some great Key Lime Bars to take to a party. They were delicious, tart, creamy and I do have to agree with the character on Dexter, the sweetened condensed milk did make them great!
Key Lime Bars Adapted from Recipezaar
5 ounces animal graham crackers 3 tablespoons packed light brown sugar 1 pinch table salt 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly 2 ounces cream cheese, room temperature 1 tablespoon grated lime zest, minced 1 pinch table salt 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk 1 large egg yolk 1/2 cup fresh lime juice 3/4 cup shredded sweetened coconut, toasted until golden and crisp (I didn't do this, but I have no doubt it would be delicious!)
1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 325°.
2. Cut about 12" length extra-wide heavy duty foil; fold cut edges back to form 7 1/2" width. With folded sides facing down, fir foil securely into bottom and up sides of 8" square baking pan, allowing excess to overhang pan sides. Spray foil with nonstick cooking spray.
3. In work bowl of food processor, pulse graham crackers until broken down, about ten 1 second pulses; process crumbs until evenly fine, about 10 seconds (you should have about 1 1/4 cups crumbs). Add brown sugar and salt; process to combine, ten to twelve 1 second pulses (if large sugar clumps remain, break them apart with fingers). Drizzle butter over crumbs and pulse until crumbs are evenly moistened with butter, about ten 1 second pulses.
4. Press crumbs evenly and firmly into bottom of prepared pan. Bake until deep golden brown, 18-20 minutes. Cool on wire rack while making filling. Do not turn off oven.
5. While crust cools, in medium bowl, stir cream cheese, zest, and salt with rubber spatula until softened, creamy, and thoroughly combined. Add sweetened condensed milk and whisk vigorously until incorporated and no lumps of cream cheese remain; whisk in egg yolk. Add lime juice and whisk gently until incorporated (mixture will thicken slightly).
6. Pour filling into crust; spread to corners and smooth surface with rubber spatula. Bake until set and edges begin to pull away slightly from sides, 15-20 minutes. Cool on wire rack to room temperature, 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Cover with foil and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 2 hours.
7. Loosen edges with paring knife and lift bars from baking pan using foil extensions; cut bars into 16 squares. Sprinkle with toasted with toasted coconut and serve. Can refrigerate for up to 2 days, crust will soften slightly. Let refrigerated bars stand at room temperature about 15 minutes before serving.
8.Can make triple citrus bars using 1 1/2 teaspoons each of grated lime zest, lemon zest, and orange zest (mince zest after measuring), and using 6 tbsp lime juice, 1 tbsp lemon juice, and 1 tablespoons orange juice.