September 08, 2013

Lime and Chocolate Pie

The lack of an oven and a fancily stocked up kitchen like the one back home in Bangalore is not enough to keep me away from making dessert. I spend a lot of time reading up recipes online; ones that don't require any baking or special ingredients.

This week's recipe research proved successful with some great examples of no-bake lemon pie. As I usually do, I read up a bunch of different versions and then mix and match them when I make it.

For the base, I decided to add a chocolate kick to the pie and used chocolate biscuits to make the cookie base. Powder 100g of chocolate biscuits. (Put the biscuits in a bag and beat the life out of them with a rolling pin) I melted 100g of butter in a pan and then added the biscuit powder to it along with 2 tbsp of sugar (if you are using biscuits that have icing between them, you probably won't need to add as much butter). Once properly combined, put into the pie dish and pat down firmly. Place the dish into the freezer for about twenty minutes. I weighted down the base by placing a heavy glass bowl over it, so that it sets hard.

Melt 100g of baking chocolate along with 1 tbsp of milk and 1tbsp of butter in a double boiler. Pour the melted mixture over the biscuit base and then put the pie dish into the fridge while you make the lemon filling. The melted chocolate will not only add to the flavour and texture but will also seep into the base and keep it from being crumbly when you slice it later.

For the lemon curd filling, squeeze out about 12 limes (the equivalent of 3/4 cup). I wish I had lemons; their flavour is so much nicer. Whisk in 4 tbsp of cornstarch into the lime juice and the zest from 2 limes. Whisk really well so that there are no lumps. Then add 1 full egg and 2 egg yolks to it and continue to whisk. Pour the mixture into a pan and keep the flame as low as possible. Add 150g of butter and keep whisking. It gets lumpy very fast as the eggs begin to cook and the cornstarch starts to thicken the lime juice. 

Right about here, I made quite a crazy mistake. I wanted to add sugar to the mixture and instead of pouring from the sugar bottle, I poured out milk powder. Panic in the kitchen! None of the recipes I read had milk in the lemon curd, because citrus curdles milk. But I was unable to remove all the milk powder and had to mix it in. I guess because it was milk powder and not real milk, it didn't curdle. So, if you have milk powder, add in about 2 tbsp. Then add in about 3/4 cup of sugar (you can alter this depending on how sweet you want it). I used brown sugar, but white is perfectly good too. The finer the sugar the faster it will melt. 

Once the mixture is a smooth, remove from heat. I then transferred it to a bowl to continue whisking. It has to be really really smooth, so whisk away furiously. Don't take too long because it will continue to set. Add a little water if you need to.

Pour the mixture over the pie base and use a knife to level out the top. And back into the fridge it goes. It won't take more than a couple hours, but I left it in there overnight.

When you are ready to eat it, whip 100ml of cream (or more). Spoon it over the pie, grate chocolate over the top and slice it up. 

I've never been too much of a fan of lemon pie. But I think with the chocolate base, it was quite delightful.



Sheryll Sampson said...

I love the idea of pouring melted chocolate over the biscuit base to keep it together. This looks nomnomilicious!

Tanisha Christo said...

Thanks Sheryll. The chocolate added plenty of flavour too since the biscuits weren't really chocolatey enough.