key lime experiments, pt 1

I’ve started using my silicone cupcake forms to make small pies for sampling. They let me get away with omitting the crust and making very small quantities. I generally just scale everything down until I end up with a single egg, reducing the baking temperature and time to allow for the drastic increase in relative surface area.

This weekend I made a Cardamom Buttermilk Pie and a Key Lime Cheesecake. Neither was noteworthy, but after making those I had some extra ingredients so I figured I might as well thrown some things together and see what happened. (I didn’t expect them to all be edible…) Here are the experiments and notes, in the order of sampling.

#1
1 oz cream cheese
1 tbsp key lime juice

Notes: This was really interesting, I liked the texture even if it was a bit more firm than I was looking for. I got the impression that doubling the lime juice would get the texture spot on. Unfortunately, it didn’t taste good. Cream cheese alone isn’t tasty, and adding lime juice doesn’t help.

#2
1 oz cream cheese
1 tbsp key lime juice
1 tbsp sugar

Notes: This tastes really good. I was surprised to find that the texture was a lot more “loose” than #1, apparently from the sugar?

#3
1 oz cream cheese
1 tbsp key lime juice
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp corn starch

Notes: flavor and texture is good, though a bit firm; I suspect I could cut back on the corn starch.

#4
1 oz cream cheese
1 tbsp key lime juice
1 tbsp sugar
1 egg yolk

Notes: Flavor and texture is good. Very similar to #3, but a bit less firm and noticeably smoother and richer (and more intense). Proportionally, this is a *lot* of egg. This realization prompted the next variation just to see exactly what the cream cheese contributes.

#5
1 tbsp key lime juice
1 tbsp sugar
1 egg yolk

Notes: Flavor okay, texture is kind of… loose, similar to #2, but more so. Interesting, but not a path to explore further.

#6
1 tbsp sour cream
1 tbsp key lime juice
1 tbsp sugar
1 egg yolk

Notes: Okay, texture, diluted lime flavor and an unpleasant tinge of something in the aftertaste. It also had an odd “drying” effect on my mouth.

#7
1 tbsp buttermilk
1 tbsp key lime juice
1 tbsp sugar
1 egg yolk

Notes: Similar to #6, but the texture and flavor were each watery.

Conclusion:
I’d like to revisit #1, but I need a way to make it sweeter. My impression was that adding more lime juice would make the texture more fluffy. I need a sweetener that won’t have the dramatic affect on the texture as granulated sugar.

Eventually I’ll try more variations of #4: with half the egg yolk; where the egg yolks are swapped with beaten egg whites; and where the cream cheese is swapped with heavy cream.

I’ve unfairly excluded butter from my list of dairy products, perhaps I should try it as an addition to #5? That would hearken back to “Lemon Pie, Pt 3”.

Maybe after Thanksgiving I’ll have an chance to try more.

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3 thoughts on “key lime experiments, pt 1

  1. Pingback: key lime experiments, pt 2 « :|

  2. Pingback: key lime experiments, pt 3 « :|

  3. Pingback: key lime experiments, pt 4 « :|

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