Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Key Lime Pie Bars

I love a good Key lime pie.  A good one.

But, alas, not all Key lime pies are good. I have had Key lime pies that are WAY too sweet, ones that leave a weird--almost bitter--aftertaste, and ones that have a decent texture, but hardly taste of the unique, fresh taste of Key limes at all.

Eight little Key limes appeared in my Bountiful Baskets (produce co-op) order this week, so I was compelled to come up with a way to use them. I decided I wanted to make a bar instead of a pie, and I wanted to bring coconut into the picture somehow, because lime and coconut are a match made in heaven. (Have you ever had a dirty Diet Coke??)

So I studied up on some of my recipes, and came up with a plan. And it turned out to be a good one!

I was especially excited about the filling. It isn't made from cream cheese (like many similar bars), so it doesn't have that cheesecake taste that can sometimes overwhelm citrus flavors. It is made from (drumroll...) cottage cheese!

STOP--don't leave this page. I PROMISE it is delicious. SOOOO delicious. My family gobbled it up. It bears no resemblance to cottage cheese whatsoever when the bars are complete. But, the mild taste of cottage cheese is such a better medium for carrying the tart, rich Key lime flavor than cream cheese would be.

And we can't forget the crust. Buttery, but not crumbly. A hint of coconut and vanilla.  It is the perfect companion to this filling.


Key Lime Pie Bars

Butter Coconut Crust:
1/3 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1 egg yolk (save white)
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup shredded coconut

Preheat oven to 350°. Mix butter, brown sugar, egg yolk, and vanilla until smooth.  Add flour and mix well. Stir in coconut.  Press into greased 8x8" baking dish. Bake 10 minutes. Cool.

1 cup low-fat cottage cheese
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon grated Key lime rind
2 1/2 tablespoons fresh Key lime juice
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 large egg
1 large egg white

In a food processor, process cottage cheese 1-2 minutes, until smooth, scraping the bowl once. Add sugar and flour and process until incorporated. Add remaining ingredients and process until well blended.
Pour onto cooled crust.
Return to oven, and bake 30-35 minutes, until set. (Edges will be light brown)

Cool completely. Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours before serving.

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  1. This looks absolutely heavenly. What I wouldn't give for a piece of it right now!!!

  2. These look really yummy. My hubs would love these, he is a key lime recipe fan.
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