LUCY BURDETTE: Here's a dinner party blooper story for you. (The palm trees have nothing to do with this, but I loved the way the photo turned out. And maybe you'll feel like you're in Key West after consuming one of these parfaits...) Anyway, I offered to bring dessert to a dinner--And decided to try to construct this recipe for the outing. But once we arrived with four glasses in hand, I realized there would be 8 people at the table, not the four I expected. Luckily, these parfait servings were enormous, so we could easily divide each in half. (Not as pretty, of course.) Not one bite was left on the table.
Beep! Beep! Beep! There's a calorie alert associated with this recipe. You should not go in with the idea (as I did) that a Key Lime Parfait would be a light dessert because of the citrus...
With that warning out of the way, here's the story behind the recipe. I've been working on my fifth Key West mystery (DEATH WITH ALL THE TRIMMINGS) which features a New York chef who's just opened a restaurant in Key West. She wants her new menu to reflect some of the tastes and history of the island. Since a key lime parfait is one of the desserts she offers, I'd thought I'd better make one for you!
Key limes are smaller than regular limes--and here I have to tell the truth--kind of a pain to juice. John helped me and it took all the limes in a pound bag to end up with 1/2 cup of juice. (Next time, I might try the recipe with regular limes.)
5 whole graham crackers, crushed, to make about one cup
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup key lime juice
key lime zest
2 cups whipping cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 350. Crush the graham crackers. (Easy way--place the graham crackers in a ziplock bag, seal the bag, and roll them to crumbs with a rolling pin.)
Mix the crumbs with the melted butter and brown sugar. Spread this on a foil-covered baking sheet and bake for ten minutes or until golden. Let this cool, then break into crumbs again.
Meanwhile, whip the cream with the powdered sugar and vanilla. (I used my food processor, which was a snap.) Set half of this aside for the topping.
Mix the condensed milk with the lime juice. The citrus will cause the milk to thicken. Gently stir in one cup of whipped cream.
Now comes the fun part, in which you layer the parts you've prepared. I chose wine snifters--next time I would try something taller and thinner, as these servings were BIG. Luckily for our waistlines and cholesterol counts, we cut them in half to serve.
Layer in some of the baked crumbs, then some of the key lime mixture, and repeat. When you have distributed all the ingredients, top with dollops of whipped cream and sprinkle with more crumbs and some zested lime if you want a stronger flavor.
Lucy Burdettes Key West Food Critic mysteries are available wherever books are sold!
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And now, the Christine Wenger giveaway results from Sunday!
I printed off the responses to my blog, cut them up, and had my hubby draw three out of a paper bag.
The winners of a set of my cozies are (drum roll):
Fish Mom (don't know her real name!)
All three ladies need to write me with their mailing address, and I'll drop them in the mail ASAP!!
I'd like to thank all those who responded so wonderfully to my blog, my cozy mysteries, and for the trip down memory lane complete with comfort food!
For those who want to take a chance on DO OR DINER and A SECOND HELPING OF MURDER, I'd love to hear what you think. Write me at: writetochrisw at aol dot com or send real mail to P.O. Box 1823, Cicero, NY 13039. I respond to each message!
Thanks everyone and congrats to the winners!
Chris Wenger, AUTHOR OF THE COMFORT FOOD MYSTERIES (PENGUIN OBSIDIAN BOOKS)
DO OR DINER - RELEASE DATE: AUGUST, 2013
A SECOND HELPING OF MURDER - RELEASE DATE: APRIL 1, 2014