Jared spent most of the week between Christmas and New Years in Florida with his family (I stayed here and went to work…). I was excited to see him when he got home….but even more excited when I saw his step-dad had sent him home with a bag FULL of key limes. Key limes! Here in California, they’re silly expensive and we rarely have them in the stores so I never buy them. But there in my kitchen was a whole bag of them!
So….what to do with them?
My mind went to only one thing….why not replace my favorite lemon bars with limes for an added twist. And what about a graham cracker crust? Yes, please.
So on the last day of 2012, I happily spent an hour or so in the kitchen with my key limes making a recipe that I will likely make again and again and again and again. They just may be in the top 15 of things I ate in 2012…
I didn’t have a recipe and thought of just literally replacing the lemon bars with limes, but wanted to spice it up a bit. So I changed things and wandered through the grocery store and came up with stuff and started cooking…..but then in the middle of it, I randomly found a Martha Stewart recipe and realized mine were almost exactly like hers…..even with the key limes. So, I’ll just give you her tried and true recipe here and hope that you make them, like now.
Martha Stewart’s Key Lime Bars (i changed mine just a tiny bit, so they’re pretty much still hers so this is her recipe…)
- 1 cup plus 2 1/2 tablespoons finely ground graham cracker crumbs
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 3 large egg yolks
- 1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated lime zest
- 2/3 cup fresh lime juice
- 1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- For the crust: Stir together the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and butter in a small bowl. Press evenly onto bottom of an 8-inch baking dish.
- Bake until dry and golden brown, about 10 minutes. Set aside and let cool completely.
- For the filling: Put egg yolks and lime zest in the bowl. Mix with an electric mixer on high speed until very thick, about 5 minutes.
- Reduce speed to medium. Add condensed milk, mixing constantly.
- Raise speed to high; mix until thick, about 3 minutes.
- Reduce speed to low. Add lime juice; mix until just combined.
- Spread filling evenly over crust using a spatula. Bake, rotating dish halfway through, until filling is just set, about 10 minutes. Let cool completely. Refrigerate at least 4 hours.
And there ya go! These were the very first things I ate in 2013 (yes, I was really hungry when we got home and couldn’t resist a small piece) and Jared and I snacked on them all New Years Day. I meant to share them with my mom because she loves everything lime, but they’re not very transportable (mushy top) and need to stay refrigerated, so I’ll just have to make them for her another time.
And P.S. ummm…in the middle of squeezing my precious key limes into juice, I noticed the sticker on the limes said “Mojito Limes”…..so maybe they turned out not to actually be key limes (Jared and Joe, you tricked me?) but the good part is, I’m pretty sure this recipe would be fantastic with any kind of lime, so no need to wait to go to Florida and pick up real key limes.
– Have you ever thought you were making something up only to find out it’s already an “official” recipe?
– What’s the first thing you ate in 2013? (I know it’s almost been a week now so you might not remember..)
– Do you like lemons/limes and tart flavors?