White Chocolate Key Lime Pie with Coconut Crust

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This luscious White Chocolate Key Lime Pie is as good as it sounds. It’s sweet and tart at the same time, with the creamy texture of cheesecake. Best of all, there’s no baking required, so it’s perfect for summer!

White Chocolate Key Lime Pie with Coconut Crust

It’s really easy to put together too . . . well, except for squeezing the juice from all of those @#$% tiny key limes. The key lime flavor really is worth the effort, but I won’t judge if you choose to use regular limes instead. My grocery store sells bags of key limes that happen to yield exactly the amount of juice need to make this pie. I neglected to count the number of key limes in the bag, but I’m guessing it was around 15 or so.

I’ve been on a coconut kick lately, so I decided to jazz up the standard graham cracker crust with some unsweetened shredded coconut, which was a perfect complement to the tangy lime flavor of the pie.

I made this pie for Easter, but it would also be perfect for Mother’s Day (hint-hint dads). It is very rich, so plan to serve small slices. We had 8 adults tackle this pie (some of whom had seconds), and still only made it through ¾ of the pie (I have the rest of the pie in the freezer, but haven’t had an excuse thaw it out yet. I’ll be sure to let you know if it freezes well or not).

Ingredients
Crust:
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted
Filling:
1 cup heavy whipping cream
11 ounces white chocolate chips*
1 tablespoon sour cream
1 teaspoon lime zest
1/3 cup key lime juice
Optional: additional white chocolate for garnish

To make the crust, mix together the graham cracker crumbs, coconut, and sugar in a medium bowl. Pour in the melted butter and stir until thoroughly combined. Press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie plate. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before filling.

To make the filling, add the cream and white chocolate chips to a small saucepan over low heat. Cook over low heat, stirring frequently, until completely melted and smooth. Remove from heat and stir in the sour cream, lime zest, and lime juice.

Pour the filling into the prepared pie crust. Cover and refrigerate at least 8 hours, or overnight. Before serving, garnish with white chocolate, if desired. Enjoy!

* Note: some chocolate chips contain fillers that help them keep their shape, but can result in a grainy texture when melted. I had good results with Ghirardelli White Baking Chips. You can also use baking bars, but they are generally more expensive than chocolate chips.

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White Chocolate and Dried Cranberry Scones

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My dad shared this delicious scone recipe with me, with the bold claim that they are the best scones ever. I love scones, so I was anxious to give this recipe a try. While maybe not the best scones I’ve ever had, they are certainly in my Top 3. The white chocolate adds little pockets of sweetness that perfectly compliment the tart dried cranberries. I modified the recipe a bit by adding some white whole wheat flour (for fiber and texture) and some chopped walnuts.

Ingredients
2 cups of unbleached flour
1 cup white whole wheat flour (or use all unbleached flour for a lighter texture)
½ cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
¾ cup (1 ½ sticks) chilled butter, cut into small pieces
1 cup dried cranberries
3/4 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup buttermilk (or 1 tablespoon white vinegar plus enough whole milk to make 1 cup)

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

In a large bowl, mix together the flours, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda.  Add the butter pieces and cut in the butter with a pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. If you don’t have a pastry blender, use two butter knifes to cut the butter into the flour mixture. Here’s a quick video I found that shows you how to do this: http://youtu.be/vfMq-uVm5vc.

Stir in the cranberries, walnuts, and white chocolate chips. Add the buttermilk to the bowl and stir until the mixture forms a soft dough that clings together (dough will be sticky).

Lightly flour a flat work surface (I use my countertop) and your hands.  Divide dough in half and shape each half into a ball.  Pat each ball into an 8 inch circle.  Place the circles on a lightly greased cookie sheet.  Score each circle into 8 wedges with floured knife, cutting about ¾ of the way into the dough. (Note: baking the scones together in a circle, worked fine, but the edges of the scones remained soft (like the interior of the scone), rather than developing a nice crust. Next time I make these I am going to try separating the wedges before baking.)

Bake at 425 degrees for 16-18 minutes, or until lightly browned. Let cool for about 10 minutes, while you brew a cup of tea to enjoy with your warm scone.

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Valentine’s Day Cake Pops

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Thanks to everyone who voted for their favorite treat in my Valentine’s poll! We had a tie between cake pops and chocolate (both delicious!). Cake pops are becoming a popular dessert, which isn’t surprising since they are fun to make (and even more fun to eat!).

Here are the heart-shaped cake pops that I made for my sweeties yesterday.

I was lucky enough to have a lot of chocolate cake with chocolate frosting left over from my daughter’s birthday a couple of weeks ago, so I simply mixed the cake and frosting together, rolled the cake into balls, and then put it in the fridge for a few hours. After the cake was thoroughly chilled, I formed the balls into heart shapes and then froze them.

Yesterday morning, I took the cake “hearts” out of the freezer and let them thaw a bit before dipping them in white chocolate and decorating them with colored sprinkles.

I’m still trying to find a good dipping chocolate that will create a smooth finish (and still taste good). This time I used a bag of Ghirardelli white chocolate chips, with about a third of a bag of Wilton’s white chocolate candy melts, and about a tablespoon of shortening (which helps to thin out the chocolate), and it worked fairly well. I’ll keep experimenting and let you know if I find the perfect method (gives me an excuse to make more cake pops).

 

 

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