What’s your favourite kind of pie? In adulthood, I’ve found this is a relatively contentious question. People have strongly held beliefs on the topic of pie. I feel that any cream based pie like coconut cream, key lime, banana, chocolate, have to be considered in their own category. Fruit filling vs. custard/cream filling are very different animals.
Banoffee Pie is easily one of my favourites when done right – like at Brassica here in Ottawa. I also love key lime, cherry, and strawberry rhubarb. The more autumnal pies like apple and pumpkin rank a bit lower on the pastry hierarchy for me.
I nabbed a bag of key limes when I was at the grocery store a couple of weeks ago thinking I would make myself a key lime pie but then I saw a Dutch baby with lemon curd and fresh berries and inspiration struck. “What if I combined brunch and dessert and made a Dutch baby with key lime curd?!”
Et voilà! I used the proportions for the pastry as I did in my Savoury Dutch Baby recipe but added a bit of sugar and baking spices for a classically sweet version. While you may have fooled yourself into thinking I am some perfectly organized, neat, and tidy individual because of the content you consume here on my blog or on my social channels, let me assure you that I too am fallible.
In my first attempt at the key lime curd, I put the custard onto my double boiler and it thickened up in no time and I thought, “Well, that was easy.” Upon sampling the fruits of my labour I realized my curd was bracingly tart: I’d forgotten to add the all-important sugar to my curd. I threw it back on the double boiler, added in the sugar and whisked endlessly until the mixture thickened up again.
So, let this be a reminder to you that social media can be deceiving and we all make mistakes. Also, I know that the past 16 months of pandemic living have taken a toll on our brains – from the overstimulation of endless Zoom calls to the constantly flitting from big screen to medium screen to small screens – I don’t exactly feel like I’m operating at 100%. I feel like my attention span has been abbreviated to that of a goldfish.
I often find myself beginning a task only to immediately get sucked into the vortex of my cellphone at first sight of a notification popping up. It’s really no surprise that I forgot to add the sugar given my current state of mental clutter.
Usually cooking is one of the few places where I feel “in flow” – where time passes without notice as I’m engrossed in a task over which I have mastery and thoroughly enjoy. After spending so much time eating at home in the past year and a half and having to do all the cooking AND cleaning – my motivation to make myself a beautiful meal has really evaporated.
But, when I do muster up the energy to prepare something delicious, like this Key Lime Pie Dutch Baby, I always wonder to myself, “Why don’t I do this more often?” So here’s hoping you find an opportunity to treat yourself to a bit of decadence this week.
Key Lime Pie Dutch Baby
A Dutch baby is a fluffy Yorkshire pudding style pancake served in a cast iron pan. Topped with key lime curd, fresh whipped cream and seasonal fruit, this is perfect brunch dish for those who prefer sweet to savoury.
- 4 tbsp salted butter divided
- 2 large eggs at room temperature
- ½ cup 18% cream at room temperature
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground ginger
- ¼ tsp cardamom
- 3 egg yolks
- 6 tbspsugar
- 1 tsp key lime zest
- ¼ cup key lime juice
- Pinch of salt
- 2 tbsp butter
- ½ cup 35% whipping cream
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tbsp sugar
- Apricots or mangos sliced
- Fresh basil or mint
Place the flour, cream, eggs, 2 tbsp melted butter, and spices in a blender or food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Blend for 10 seconds, scrape down the sides, and then blend for another 20 seconds. The batter will be quite loose and liquidy.
Leave the batter in the blender and set aside to rest 20 to 25 minutes. This gives the flour time to absorb the liquid.
Meanwhile, place a 9″ or 10″ cast iron skillet on the middle rack to warm along with the oven. Heat the oven to 425°F.
When ready to make the pancake, remove the skillet from the oven using oven mitts and place it on top of the stove. Add the remaining 2 tbsp butter and swirl the pan to melt the butter and coat the bottom and sides of the pan.
Pour the batter on top of the butter. Tilt the pan if needed so that the batter runs evenly to all sides. Place the skillet in the oven.
Place the skillet in the center of the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until the pancake is fully puffed and browned on top. DO NOT open the oven during the first 15 minutes of cooking or you might deflate your pancake.
Meanwhile, make the key lime curd. In a heat proof bowl, combine egg yolks, sugar, key lime zest, key lime juice and salt. Whisk to combine.
Place bowl over a double boiler and cook over medium-low heat, whisking constantly until thickened. It takes about 5-7 minutes.
Remove from heat and add butter. Stir until smooth. Let cool to room temperature.
In a large bowl, whip cream until stiff peaks are just about to form. Beat in vanilla and sugar until peaks form. Make sure not to over-beat, cream will then become lumpy and butter-like.
Remove the Dutch Baby from the oven and top with dollops of key lime curd and whipped cream. Finish with torn sliced apricots or mango, raspberries and a couple sprigs of fresh basil or mint. Serve and enjoy!