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Key lime pie not setting completely

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I've been having trouble with whole key lime pies lately.

i can make a couple hundred pounds of the baked custard with no problem for desserts in cups/verrines, but when i bake a whole pie and slice it, it just doesn't set up.

i baked 2 pies a couple of days ago, sliced them, and put them in clamshells and they all caved in at the most narrow part (what would be the center of the pie.

the recipe i use i think is a standard one:

1 cup key lime juice (i use nellie & joes)

8 egg yolks (i use 4.8oz of pasteurized yolks)

2 cans condensed milk

i pour the filling into a prebaked graham crust, and bake for 17-20 minutes. i think that i got this recipe from the joy of cooking and adapted it to use liquid egg yolks.

i'm not sure what the cause of this is. i think maybe it could be the egg yolks?

i use pasteurized egg yolks for my creme brulee, and it sets up perfectly. in the past, i used fresh egg yolks and was able to slice the pie and it didn't cave in.

has anyone had something like this happen to them? i'm going to try later today using fresh yolks and seeing what happened....maybe its an issue with the heat of the pasteurization

20130709_111507.jpg

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I made a key lime pie the other day and will be making another today. I used the recipe on the Nellie & Joe's bottle. I have for years because it's perfect. The proportions are 1/2 c juice, 3 egg yolks, and 1 can of condensed milk per pie. To take this pie to the next level, make your own graham cracker crust adding some nuts to the mix. The salty crunch is great with the sweet filling. I also baked it for closer to 22 minutes.

Magi

edited to add baking time


Edited by KaffeeKlatsch (log)

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Jaymes   

I made a key lime pie the other day and will be making another today. I used the recipe on the Nellie & Joe's bottle. I have for years because it's perfect. The proportions are 1/2 c juice, 3 egg yolks, and 1 can of condensed milk per pie. To take this pie to the next level, make your own graham cracker crust adding some nuts to the mix. The salty crunch is great with the sweet filling. I also baked it for closer to 22 minutes.

Magi

edited to add baking time

Us, too. For years. Years and years. Decades actually.

And that recipe also works for us. However, having lived in South Florida, we very much prefer the pie to be considerably more tart, which is how we remember it being served down on the Keys. So we increase the amount of lime juice. We do that by taste. Stand there tasting and adding and stirring and tasting and adding and stirring.

Until it's perfect.

Regarding the "setting up." Maybe I'm doing something wrong also but I don't think it's ever going to "set up" hard. It is a rather loose and creamy pie.

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Jaymes   

I remembered the cooking time wrong. I made another last night and baked it for about 15 minutes.

Right. And they just added those few minutes to the Nellie & Joe's label not so long ago, because of the "raw egg" concern. If I recall correctly, and I'm pretty sure I do, originally that recipe called for no cooking time at all.

I do about 11-15 minutes, too.

To top it, sometimes I make a meringue, but we really love heavy cream whipped with some brown sugar and a little bit of dark rum.

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You might have just had too much mix in the pie shell. The recipe on the bottle (which we've used for at least 10 years) has the amounts KaffeeKlatch listed as for one 9" shell.

When using pasteurized carton yolks, I err on the side of a little bit more (e.g., one yolk weighs .67 ounce so I use .75 for ease of measuring).

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Jaymes   

I remembered the cooking time wrong. I made another last night and baked it for about 15 minutes.

Right. And they just added those few minutes to the Nellie & Joe's label not so long ago, because of the "raw egg" concern. If I recall correctly, and I'm pretty sure I do, originally that recipe called for no cooking time at all.

I do about 11-15 minutes, too.

To top it, sometimes I make a meringue, but we really love heavy cream whipped with some brown sugar and a little bit of dark rum.

Just out of curiosity (and to double-check my aging memory), did a quick search. I thought that I recalled that the first several decades of my Key Lime Pie making involved no cooking/baking time whatsoever. And it was only when the "raw eggs" panic came along and put a stop to so many things - the original Orange Julius recipes, Caesar Salads, etc. - that we had to stick the pie into the oven for a bit.

And in this case, anyway, my memory fails me not:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keylime_pie

Interesting history.

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