Since we've had a taste of summer last week here in NYC, I've been in the mood for all those cool and refreshing frozen desserts. Since Key lime pie is one of my favorites, I thought I would try turning it into ice cream. Now I can't decide which I like better: the pie or the ice cream!
In Florida, Key lime pie is made with actual Key limes. They're smaller than regular limes and quite tart. As they're difficult to find, I've cheated and used conventional limes you can find at any grocery store. The result is still fantastic. If you're lucky enough to have access to Key limes, you can use those instead.
Using a traditional graham cracker crust as a garnish is a great addition to the ice cream. Instead of shaping it into a pie pan, I've rolled it out and cut it into wedges. The wedges of crust make a great presentation and a fun way to scoop up the ice cream. Key lime pie ice cream is bursting with flavor and the perfect treat to enjoy throughout the spring and summer.
KEY LIME PIE ICE CREAM
Graham cracker crust recipe adapted from Ina Garten, Family Style
For the ice cream:
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
3/4 to 1 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. sea salt
5 large egg yolks
1 tbsp. lime zest
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
For the graham cracker crust:
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 10 crackers)
1/4 cup sugar
6 tbsp. (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted
To make the ice cream:
Fill a large metal bowl with about 2-inches of ice water. Put a slightly smaller metal bowl inside. Place a fine mesh strainer over the two bowls and set aside.
In a medium size saucepan, combine the cream, milk, sugar, and salt. Stir the mixture well, bring just to a simmer and remove from heat.
Meanwhile, whisk the egg yolks together in a medium bowl. Slowly pour the warm cream mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly. Return the egg and cream mixture to the saucepan and cook over medium heat until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon or rubber spatula (or when the temperature reaches 170 degrees F on an instant read thermometer).
Pour the custard through the fine mesh strainer into the prepared bowls. Stir over the ice bath until the custard is cool. Stir in the lime zest and juice. Place a sheet of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the custard and another sheet over the bowl. Refrigerate until until cold, preferably overnight. Process in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions. Freeze until ready to serve. Garnish with a slice of lime, if desired.
Yield: About 5 cups
To make the crust:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a medium size bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and butter. Stir to combine. Turn the mixture out onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Use your hands to flatten out the crust and shape into a circle. Gently roll out the dough to an even thickness (about 1/4-inches thick). Bake the crust for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and immediately score the crust into wedges using a knife. Let cool completely before breaking into wedges. Store crust-wedges in a plastic zip-top bag and refrigerate until ready to use.