One of the things to love about Winter is that it is citrus season. Oranges, lemons, tangerines and blood oranges brighten the produce aisles of the supermarkets. I usually have an orange for breakfast. But for a bit more decadent way to enjoy citrus try this smooth chiffon pie with a bite from the gingersnap crust. It brightens even the most gloomy of days.
We are beginning a kitchen project this week. We have been slowly updating what we found when we bought the house in Florida. We updated the appliances a few years ago and added new countertops. The previous countertops were the same faux wood as our cabinets. Not pretty. We chose Corian. We have granite in Lake Lure, but Corian seemed the right choice for Florida. Our current project is to reface all of our kitchen cabinets, replacing the doors and adding a few pull out shelves. Here is how the kitchen looks now.
The new cabinets will be off white, creamier than what you see here. The style is Shaker with a beadboard insert. The installers will be here Thursday and Friday and should be able to finish the job in just those two days.
The cabinet over the dishwasher will have glass doors. I am anxious to see the results. I will give you an update when it is all put back together again. In the meantime, I will be making a pot of soup before the work begins. I was told that we could still use the kitchen and it made sense to have soup in the fridge to reheat for dinner each night.
I will also have this tart lemony pie with a hint of orange zest to dig into. I plan to add this to my list of Florida desserts. I usually make key lime pie for guests, but this lemon chiffon pie is a good alternative. By the way, the background for my pie is a Downton Abbey wrapping paper available at World Market. I was immediately attracted to it before I even knew its provenance. This year’s episodes of Downton Abbey are riveting. What will happen to Mr. Bates? Will Lady Mary find happiness?
LEMON CHIFFON GINGERSNAP PIE (Williams Sonoma)
1 1/4 cups gingersnap cookie crumbs
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cups plus 3 tablespoons sugar divided
1 package unflavored powdered gelatin
1/8 teaspoon Kosher salt
3/4 cup fresh lemon juice, strained
1 tablespoon finely grated orange zest
4 large egg yolks, lightly beaten
1 1/4 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a bowl, stir together the crumbs, butter, and 3 tablespoons granulated sugar until the crumbs are evenly moistened. Pat the crumb mixture firmly and evenly into the bottom and all the way up the sides of a 9-inch pie pan or dish. Bake until the crust is firm, 5-7 minutes.
Pour 1/4 cup cold water into a saucepan and sprinkle with the gelatin. Let stand until the gelatin softens and swells, 5-10 minutes. Stir in the 3/4 cup granulated sugar, salt, lemon juice, orange zest, and egg yolks; the mixture will be lumpy. Cook over medium heat, stirring continuously, until the gelatin melts and the mixture thickens, 6-8 minutes. Do not allow the mixture to boil. Set the saucepan in an ice bath until the mixture is cool to the touch.
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, whip the cream and confectioners’ sugar on medium-high speed until thick, soft peaks form. Spoon the whipped cream into the gelatin mixture and fold together with a rubber spatula until smooth. Pour into the prepared crust, smoothing the top.
Refrigerate the pie until chilled and firm, 3-4 hours. Let stand at room temperature for 20 minutes before serving.