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(Stephanie Eddy for The Globe and Mail)
(Stephanie Eddy for The Globe and Mail)

A surprising twist makes this key lime pie unforgettable Add to ...

As a lover of classic desserts, I have a deep appreciation for a basic, play-by-the-rules recipe. That being said, sometimes adding an unexpected flavour makes for an unforgettable dessert. At first glance, this pie may appear to be a run-of-the-mill key lime pie. But it has a surprising – and delicious – twist.

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The majority of key lime pie recipes call for a 14 oz can (about 414 mL) of condensed milk, which is 100 mL more than the standard Canadian can size. That means most recipes entail opening a second can and eyeballing 100 mL. And then you’re left wondering what to do with the leftovers (besides the obvious spoon-to-mouth method).

The solution is simple: Don’t crack that second can! A ½ cup of puréed fresh mango has a similar sweetness level and luscious texture that makes it the ideal substitute. Add some shredded coconut to the traditional graham-cracker crust and you don’t just have a pie: You have a tropical vacation in a pan.

Feel free to use juice from either regular or key limes. For the best results, make sure the mango is very soft and ripe.

  • Preparation time: 15 minutes
  • Ready time: 8 hours and 40 minutes, including chilling time

Ingredients

1 cup (160 g) graham-cracker crumbs

1 tablespoon sugar

1/3(30 g) cup shredded unsweetened coconut

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

1 medium ripe mango

½ cup fresh squeezed lime juice

1 can (300 ml) sweetened condensed milk

4 egg yolks

1 cup whipping cream

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Icing sugar to taste

 

Method

Preheat oven to 350 F.

In a nine-inch pie pan, stir together the graham-cracker crumbs, sugar and coconut. Drizzle with the melted butter and stir with a fork to combine. Press the mixture firmly along the bottom and sides of the pan to form a crust. Place in the oven and bake for 10 minutes. If your crust puffs during baking, use a fork to gently press it back down. Place the pan on a wire cooling rack until it is ready to be filled. Keep the oven on at 350.

Peel the mango, cut into pieces, and purée in a blender. Measure a ½ cup of the purée and put into a medium bowl. Save any remaining mango to add to smoothies or to pour on top of ice cream. Add the lime juice, condensed milk and egg yolks and stir until smooth.

Pour the filling into the baked pie crust and bake for 15 minutes. The filling will still be a little bit wiggly in the middle but it will set as the pie is chilling. Place pan on a wire rack until cool enough to put in the fridge. Chill for at least eight hours and up to three days.

When you are ready to serve the pie, whip the cream with the vanilla extract and add icing sugar to taste. I like mine with only a tablespoon or two of icing sugar. Top each slice with a dollop of whipped cream. Makes one nine-inch pie.

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