I was looking for a great dessert (read: easy & quick) to make with our fillo cups last week, when I came across this five star Key Lime Pie at allrecipes.com.  It looked straight forward enough and I was not in the mood to reinvent the wheel so out I went to gather the ingredients.  Never having made this from scratch I have not had to deal with the dilemma of which to use,  Key limes or regular limes?  Being resourceful and using the search bar, I was able to get some answers to share with you.

Apparently  “Key” Limes used to be farmed in Florida, Texas and California of which the “Key” Limes were valued for their unique flavor compared to other limes. A lucrative crop. The soil and abundant water of the Key’s mellowed the lime’s astringent nature and raised their status from ho-hum run-of-the-mill limes to a “buy and hold”. Vintage architectural guides of the 19th century reported these limes had an average length of 2 inches or more, which would mean, with favorable growing conditions, of sun, water and alkalinity of these areas these limes would have been considered fat & juicy by our current standards.

Unfortunately it is almost impossible to find USA grown Key limes nowadays. They are mostly grown in Mexico now and do not share the original qualities of the long lost American and Floridian Key limes that made them famous.  The Mexican “Key Limes” are purported to be small, dry and bitter as their growing conditions are no match for the USA locales. Fillo Factory pastry cups filled with Key Lime Pie

So after learning all this, I decided to use regular lime juice from the nicest fresh limes I could find. Why would I pay more to get bitter, dry limes because of marketing hype? And I’m no expert, but my little pie cups tasted just divine.  I’ll give them 5 stars.

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