Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Come Rain or Shine

For about two weeks the rain fell, and fell, and fell. It felt like it would never end. The weather inspired me to make something warm and cozy for the weekend and I selected a bread pudding with spiced rum sauce. I even decided that only a wimpy baker would go buy the bread to make the bread pudding, I on the other hand was a daring baker who did not believe in short cuts! So I decided I'd make cinnamon raisin bread days before and then turn it into bread pudding on the weekend. But, just as my plan came together the sun appeared, blazing with a vengeance and I just couldn't bring myself to execute my plan.

I went back to the drawing board and while in the grocery store I was inspired by a huge bag of limes. I'll make Key Lime Pie, I thought. But these weren't key limes, just regular limes. While talking about it with a friend she made a mistake and called it Lime Cay Pie. I liked the way it sounded and decided to rename my dessert after one of my favorite beaches. After all, this weekend would've been perfect for a trip to Lime Cay plus I'd eliminate the risk of being accosted by purists who are against using anything but Key Limes to make this dessert. I searched for a recipe and found one for Key Lime Tart in Martha's Baking Handbook. I love tarts and thought it would be more elegant and easier to slice so I went for it! Lime Cay Tart!

I ditched the crust in the book and decided to make one from ginger biscuits. The same crust I made for the Nectarine and Mascarpone Tart. I thought the ginger and lime would go well together. Perhaps it could've done with more baking because it crumbled quite a bit at the edges, affecting the look of my tart. After making the crust with processing ginger biscuits and combining the crumbs with melted butter, I baked it for 8 minutes and left it to cool. 

The filling was soooo easy to make, I beat egg yolks and sugar together until pale and fluffy, then added lime zest, condensed milk and lime juice. I then filled the cooled crust and baked it for 10 minutes. Then I attempted to cover it loosely with plastic wrap but once the plastic wrap touched the top some of it stuck to it. It ruined the smooth finish of the tart :( . Oh, the simple lessons I learn while baking. I placed it in the fridge and left it to cool. I declined to make the garnish. It would take 30-40 minutes of cooking to make and I did not have the luxury of time for such a frivolous undertaking. 

I tasted the tart and it was wonderful. It was tart but sweet, silky smooth and refreshing, just the thing you'd want on a nice hot day. The book suggested that it be served with sweetened whipped cream, which I also didn't bother to make but I can see why they would suggest it. Something to cut the tartness a bit. For me though, it was great without it. Had a lovely zing to it!

On Saturday my fiancĂ© mentioned he felt for ice cream so of course I volunteered to make some for him. I chose Unbelieveably Good Chocolate Blueberry Ice Cream from Dorie Greenspan's Baking From My Home to Yours. I couldn't resist trying this recipe. The name was taunting me and I just had to know whether it did its name justice. This was my second time making ice cream but the first time I made one which contained egg yolks and had a custard that needed to be heated. Well I learned some lessons there as well, I cooked the custard into something resembling scrambled eggs twice before getting it right. But finally, on the third try I made the custard and heated it properly. Then I poured it over the chopped chocolate, stirred it until smooth and then put it in my ice cream maker. When it was almost done I added the blueberry preserves. I let the mixture freeze overnight before tasting.

The ice cream was tasty, very chocolaty and had a beautiful dark colour but unbelievably good? No. Just good. So, like the brownies and chocolate chip cookies, I'm still on the search for the perfect recipe.

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