North Carolina Lemon Pie
If you like lemon bars you are going to love this recipe. The unique thing about it is that it uses saltine crackers for the crust. The filling is light and reminiscent of a Key Lime Pie and a Lemon Icebox Pie my Grandmother used to make. Serve it with fresh whipped cream for the perfect summer dessert!
6 ounces saltine crackers (about 36 crackers)
1/8 teaspoon salt
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
¼ cup light corn syrup
1 can sweetened condensed milk (14 oz)
4 large egg yolks
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
½ cup lemon juice
½ cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons confectioner’s sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Add the saltines and salt to the food processor and pulse until the crackers are coarse crumbs. Add the melted butter and corn syrup and pulse until the crumbs resemble oatmeal.
To make the crust, Add the cracker mixture to a greased 9-inch pie plate. Using the bottom a dry measuring cup or flat bottomed glass, press the crumbs into the pie pan making sure it is even on the bottom and comes up the sides of the pan. Put the pie pan on a baking sheet and bake the crust in the oven for about 17 to 20 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.
To make the filling, While the crust is baking, whisk the sweetened condensed milk, egg yolks, cream, and lemon zest together in a bowl. Add the lemon juice and whisk until it is well combined (you can do this in a stand mixer also). Remove the crust from the oven and pour the lemon mixture into the baked crust. (the crust does not have to be cooled). Place the pie back into the oven and bake for another 15 to 17 minutes until the edges of the custard is set but the center still jiggles. Remove the pie from the oven and allow it to cool completely. Refrigerate it for a minimum of 1 hour or until the pie is completely chilled.
To make the whipped cream, Chill the bowl of a stand mixer, using a stand mixer with a whisk attachment, add the heavy cream, confectioner’s sugar and the vanilla extract to the chilled bowl, and whisk on medium low until the cream begins to foam. Increase the speed to high and whip until stiff peaks form (about 3 minutes). Spread or pipe the whipped cream onto the chilled pie and serve immediately.