I was invited to a BBQ and was asked to bring something sweet. It was a busy week and I didn't have time for anything complicated. The weather here has been ridiculously hot and humid, so I didn't want to bring anything too heavy. I wanted to make something light and refreshing, like a lemon meringue pie, but didn't want to put in all the effort.
Then, I remembered a recipe I ran across last summer for Atlantic Beach Pie, but hadn't gotten around to trying yet. It was a lemon pie recipe that didn't require many ingredients or too much time in the kitchen. And most of the ingredients are items I usually have on hand in my pantry which was a bonus!
Atlantic Beach Pie is said to have originated in North Carolina and is a sweet and salty combination that's perfect for summer. It has a simple saltine cracker crust and and a tangy, lemony filling that requires no more effort than whisking the ingredients together.
At first, I thought the idea of using saltine crackers for a pie crust was odd, but the addition of sugar and butter cuts down on the saltiness of the crackers leaving just enough salt to play beautifully with the sweetness of the filling.
To make Atlantic Beach Pie, you crush saltines and mix them with butter and sugar, baking until golden brown. Then whisk sweetened condensed milk with lemon juice and eggs. Pour it into the saltine crust and bake for about 15 minutes and you're done!
I finished the pie off with fresh whipped cream and a sprinkling of sea salt. This was the perfect summer dessert.
Atlantic Beach Pie
Adapted from Food52
For the crust:
1 1/2 sleeves of saltine crackers (I just eyeballed it)
1/2 cup butter, melted
3 TBS sugar
For the filling:
1 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
4 egg yolks
1/2 cup lemon juice
To make the pie crust:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Pulse saltines in a food processor with sugar to break them up. Add melted butter and continue pulsing until crackers are finely crushed. Squeeze cracker mixture in your fingers. If it holds together like dough, it's done. Press mixture into an 8 inch pie pan and chill for 15 minutes. Once chilled, bake until crust is golden brown, about 16-18 minutes.
To make the filling:
Whisk together the sweetened condensed milk and egg yolks until combined. Next whisk in the lemon juice making sure ingredients are completely combined. Pour the filling into the pie shell (this does not have to be completely cooled before adding the filling-another time saver!). Bake until set, about 16 minutes.
Cool the pie on a rack until you're able to refrigerate it and leave it in the fridge until it's completely cold. I made mine a few hours before the BBQ. The pie should be cold before cutting and serving. Top with fresh whipped cream and a sprinkling of sea salt.