Do you ever get a hankering for something that brings back happy childhood memories? For me that something is often related to food.
One special memory has to do with lemon pie, the kind made with condensed milk. I don’t remember whether or not I really like the pie, but I definitely liked the sweetness of condensed milk. Whenever she made the pie Mother would leave just enough in the can for me to spoon out. What a treat!
So, with that in mind I decided to make a lemon pie the old fashioned way. It’s so simple with all that’s required is a graham cracker crust, condensed milk, lemon juice and egg yolks.
Over the years I’ve guessed at how many graham crackers to use in a crust finally deciding a packet and a half is just right. When the crackers are finely crushed either in a food processor or blender, 6 tablespoons of melted butter and 1/4 cup of sugar are added. The mixture is patted firmly into a pie pan and baked for about 8 minutes in a 350 degree oven.
When the crust is baked I add thinly sliced bananas to the bottom. This is something I learned from a favorite restaurant whose key lime pie was a favorite. What the bananas do is add just a touch of surprising taste.
For the filling Mother used one can of condensed milk and one egg yolk, but I’ve learned to like a denser pie. These days I use two cans and increase the egg yolks from one to three. Oh, let’s not forget 2/3 cup of lemon juice. The three ingredients are blended, placed in the crust and baked for about 20 minutes. That’s all there is to this easy pie.
Now, Mother always used the egg whites for meringue, but I save them for another day and top the cooled pie with cream whipped with powdered sugar and vanilla. Calories….who cares!!
The pie slices beautifully, and I take very small bites to make the piece last as long as possible. The hankering is satisfied, and the memories come flooding back. You can’t beat that!