Friday, March 30, 2012

Grapefruit/Lime Citrus Pie

I had a few re-dos to get to the final product above.  My time in the kitchen was not as smooth as expected, but I finally ended up with the results I expected.  I guess I just was having an "off" day.

The crust mix, made of a chopped macadamias and vanilla cookie crumbs turned into nut butter the first go around!  I ran the food processor for too long. I tried to salvage it, but once it gets to that point, there is no going back.  On the second try, I pulsed my nuts in with the cookie crumbs and did not pulverize them, I just did some pulses.

Also, I got in a hurry with the gelatin and assumed that one envelope was 1 tsp of gelatin instead of measuring. Ha-I found out that I created a recipe for a lime rubber ball!  The whole sprinkling thing had to be done over again.

The above pie is made with a citrus blend, but the primary citrus used is grapefruit.  The filling texture was light as air with that special tartness that only citrus can deliver. It was a nice change from the heavier key lime pies or cheesecakes.  Also, since the crust has no flour in it, the flavor and crunch of the macadamias enhanced each bite. I do have a weakness for citrus, but even those that like the occasional taste of a tart dessert will be pleased. This recipe calls for a 9 inch deep dish pie pan, but I used a 9 inch springform pan instead.

Grapefruit Citrus Pie
adapted from Bon Appetit

1/4 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup ground vanilla wafers
7 oz roasted macadamia nuts
1/4 cup dark brown sugar, packed

1/4 cup fresh lime juice (from about 3 limes)
2 cups fresh pink grapefruit (from about 3 grapefruits)
1/4 tsp unflavored gelatin
1/4 cup whipping cream (for first addition)
1 1/4 cup whipping cream (for second addition)
1/4 cup plus 1 tbs sugar
9 oz imported white chocolate (Lindt, Callebaut)

7 thin lime slices, halved
8 oz imported white chocolate curls or just 1 oz for grating on top (optional)
2 tbs sugar
1 cup whipping cream

To make the crust, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Fill a food processor with ground vanilla wafers and then add the macadamia nuts and pulse until the nuts are chopped.  You want nut chunks not powder, so do not overdo it.  Empty mixture into a small bowl and add the brown sugar and melted butter. Stir until mixture becomes clumpy and there are no dry crumbs.  Press mixture into a 9 inch springform pan or a 9 inch deep dish pan.  Bottom and sides must be evenly covered.
Bake for about 10 minutes or until it turns a golden hue.  Remove and let cool completely before filling.

For the filling, pour grapefruit juice and 1/4 cup of sugar into saucepan and place over high heat. Once mixture comes to a boil, set the timer for about 15 minutes.  The remaining amount of the mixture after cooking should be about 3/4 cup.  Remove saucepan from heat and set aside.

Take out a small bowl and fill with the lime juice.  Then sprinkle the gelatin over the top of the juice and let sit to absorb for 10 minutes.  Place the saucepan of grapefruit back on the heat, this time at a low temperature.  Add the lime/gelatin mixture, white chocolate and 1/4 cup of whipping cream.  Stir the mixture until all the white chocolate has melted.  Pour into a heatproof bowl and place in refrigerator to set up and cool. This should take about 2 hours, but stop and give the mixture a good stir after every 1/2 hour.

On the last 15 minute stirring interval,  pour the remaining 1 1/4 cup of whipping cream in a bowl and add 1 tbs of sugar.  Beat cream on high until stiff peaks form.  Then stir in chilled grapefruit mixture until all is blended.  Pour filling into prepared pan and smooth over the top, making sure everything is even.  Place in fridge for at least 4 hours or overnight to chill prior to  topping.

After the pie is completely chilled, then you can top it.  Again, beat together the cream and sugar until it has a stiff peak consistency.  Fill piping bag and pipe about 15 rosettes along the outer edge of the pie.  Then, with the rounded edge facing upward, put a lime slice between each rosette. Place the chocolate curls on top or grate white chocolate (if desired) on the top center of the pie.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.     
               **LAST YEAR: Chestnut Pound Cake**