Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Cool Strawberry Cream Pie

Here it comes... everyone's favourite part of the meal (and one that low-carbers don't get often)... DESSERT!

Summers and cottages go together quite well, as most people are aware. I've never really been a winter-sports person, so my main idea of a cottage is a nice little house with a nice big fire pit, some water to play in and lots of old movies. My parents just happen to have such a cottage! So, my friends and I trekked down to enjoy ourselves, and I knew I would be in trouble if there wasn't at least one sweet thing I could eat. (I got into trouble anyways, but that's another story...)

I decided to show off my baking skills to my houseguests by making a pie. Not just any pie...a strawberry pie! How domestic and culinary is that?! Well, let's find out!

Cool Strawberry Cream Pie
Original recipe found at Low Carb Luxury
Serves 8. Carbs per serving: 5g.

Ingredients For Meringue Shell:
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 3 Tablespoons Splenda

Ingredients For Filling:
  • 1 small pkg. sugar-free gelatin (strawberry or raspberry) (I ended up using 2, I will explain later.)
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 1 8oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup Splenda
  • 1 quart strawberries, cleaned and sliced

  1. Preheat oven to 275°F. Grease one Pyrex pie plate and set aside.

  2. Beat egg whites until foamy. Add cream of tartar then beat until whites stand in peaks. Add Splenda and beat for an additional minute or two. Spread the meringue evenly in the bottom of the plate and up the sides. Bake 1 hour and 10 minutes in a 275°F oven, then raise the temperature to 300° and bake for an additional 20 minutes. Remove from oven and cool while you make filling.

  3. Dissolve gelatin with 3/4 cup boiling water. Stir in 1/3 cup cold water. Place in freezer for approximately 15-20 minutes (just until it begins to gel.)
    (So far, so good!!)

  4. When the gelatin is ready, whip the heavy cream until stiff (but not dry). Fold in cream cheese and Splenda. Fold in gelatin. Stir in strawberries (reserving a few for garnish if you like.) Pour over meringue shell in pie plate and let chill until firm. — about 2 hours.
    I was a bit worried my filling was a bit runny, so I added another packet of jello. You could just add gelatin if you had that around. Or not. Up to you. (Not sure it helped us any but it didn't harm anything either.)
    Ok. This step is where it all fell apart for me. We followed the directions like...exactly and ended up with this:

    So this is what we think was wrong: a) I left the jello in the fridge a bit too long. However it absorbed in the end, so if this happens to you I wouldn't worry too much. b)....there is no way we could get our softened cream cheese to "fold in" like the recipe says. NO WAY! Next time, I am going at this with an electric beater. I honestly think that if you beat it and then just stirred in the strawberries as the last thing, it will turn out smooth, sexy and sweet.

What I thought...
I thought the thing turned out ok, but as stated above, it really needs to be blended fully. I was a bit weirded out when I got a little lump of cream cheese in my pie piece. On the up-side, it is quite tasty and I thought the crust turned out REALLY WELL. My boyfriend thought it was too 'eggy', but I think that's just because he was in the room while it was cooking. It did smell like eggs cooking. But it tastes more like waffle cone, or McDonald's ice cream cone. I would definitely use that meringue crust again!

Another good thing is despite it's flaws, a few people were brave enough to try it. Did they like it or were they being nice? I'm not sure. But I know next time...everyone will LOVE it.

Good luck and enjoy!

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