Friday, May 27, 2016

Lemon Icebox Pie in a Jar

When I think of lemon icebox pie I instantly think of my dad.  He LOVES a good lemon icebox pie.  But it has to meet all of his requirements.  Sweet, but not too sweet.  Thick, tart, without being too tart.  A great crust, but it has to be a good balance of salty and sweet and it definitely has to be crispy.  And if you want big bonus points...a meringue topping with lightly browned peaks will put it over the top.

So, when I was chatting with him about what foods he thought of when summer and Memorial day rolled around it's was no surprise that lemon icebox pie was one of the first things out of his mouth.  Among some of the other top contenders were key lime pie, banana pudding and brownies and ice cream.  But, he kept going back to the lemon icebox during the conversation.
That conversation stuck with me, as well as lemon icebox pie. 

Like my dad, I'm a huge fan of the lemon icebox.  Tart, sweet, creamy and tangy.  I mean, it hits all those notes I love so much.  I know pies are a staple at many holiday celebrations, but they are a finicky dessert and they can sometimes be a pain to serve.  So with that thought, I automatically went to pie in a jar. 

I'm slightly obsessed with food in jars.  I'm not sure what it is about it, but it's cute and I'm instantly drawn to it.  So, going with dad's rec and my obsession with jars, I decided to make a lemon icebox pie in a cute little mason jar!

These little pies were so much fun to make.  And since they are in jars they are easy to transport.  Oh, and if you're taking them to a cookout this weekend (or anytime during the summer) simply set them in a bucket of ice to keep them cool.  And they're cute!
Aside from the ease and cuteness, these pies definitely hit all my dad's requirements (minus the meringue).  But he still wouldn't disapprove, he likes a good dollop of whipped cream too, so it would still get his seal of approval. 

These little pies have a crisp, buttery crust that is sweet with the perfect amount of salt.  It's topped with a filling that is creamy, smooth, sweet, tangy and tart.  Delish!  To serve a dollop of fresh whipped cream and a sprig of mint and viola.  A perfectly beautiful dessert that is light, sweet and screams summer!

This is a pie that I know would please my dad and all you lemon lovers out there.

Lemon Icebox Pie in a Jar

Ingredients:

For the crust-
1 1/4 Cups graham cracker crumbs (about 7 graham crackers crumbled)
1 Tbsp sugar
1 Tsp salt
2 1/2 Tbsp butter, melted

For the filling-
1 Can condensed milk
Zest of 2 lemons
1/2 Cup fresh squeezed lemon juice, about 4 medium lemons
1 1/3 Cup heavy whipping cream
1 Tbsp sugar

Directions:

Combine graham cracker crumbs, sugar, salt, and butter a bowl and mix until all crumbs are coated in butter.  Place 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons loosely packed mixture in half pint, wide mouth mason jars.  Firmly press the crumbs in each jar to form a solid layer.  Either set aside, or place in a 350 oven for 8 minutes, remove and allow to cool slightly.

For the filling-

Combine condensed milk, lemon zest and lemon juice in a bowl and whisk to combine. 

Pour whipping cream in a separate bowl and beat on high until peaks begin to form.  Add the sugar and continue whipping until stiff peaks form.  Reserve about half a cup.

Gently fold the lemon mixture into the whipped cream.  Divide the mixture evenly among the jars, leaving a tiny space at the top so the lid can fit if traveling.  Refrigerate for at least one hour, or until ready to serve.

To serve-
Top with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprig of mint.  Serve.

Recipe source: A Lynsey original

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