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Cafe Boogaloo's Key Lime Pie

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This is the recipe for a perfect summer pie. Not only is it light and citrusy, but the oven only needs to be on for 20 minutes. For parties, I buy pre-made graham cracker tart crusts to make individual servings. I like to decorate the center of each tart with a single curled strip of lime zest. This recipe makes one pie, or about a dozen tarts. Key lime juice is sold in bottles at gourmet markets and Cost Plus. Refrigerate the bottle after opening, and if the juice starts to darken, toss it. Now might be a good time to invent a refreshing key lime cocktail. Although you occasionally run across fresh key limes in Southern California, they are tiny, and look like they are difficult to juice so I have never tried it. Thanks so much to Stephen at Cafe Boogaloo for giving me this recipe many years ago, and for recently giving me permission to share the magic with all of you.

(Recipe after the Jump)


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3 egg yolks

1 (14 oz.) can sweetened condensed milk

1/3 cup key lime juice

1/2 pound cream cheese, softened

Fill a medium-sized pot of water 2/3 of the way up with water. Bring to a to a simmer. Turn off the burner under the pot. Set a heatproof bowl over the larger bowl (like a bain marie). Add egg yolks, sweetened condensed milk and key lime juice to the bowl. Stir often over simmering water for about 15 minutes until mixture is warm.

(At this point I cheat and add chopped pieces of cream cheese to the warm ingredients, using a wire whisk to mix until the cream cheese is melted and incorporated. Boogaloo Cafe recommends the following step...) In a mixing bowl, whip cream cheese. Gradually add the milk mixture, scraping down the sides of the bowl. Incorporate the milk mixture slowly to avoid any lumps.

Pour filling into crust. Refrigerate at least 6 hours, preferably overnight.


1 cup crushed vanilla wafers

1/2 cup crushed macadamia nuts (roasted, unsalted)

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1/4 cup butter, softened

Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.

Pulse ingredients together in a food processor. Press into a pie pan by hand. Bake for 20 minutes. Let cool.