Fact of life: It is hard to create.
It’s tough to keep moving through the blockages, to challenge yourself to be innovative, to act when subsisting is easier. I think that for many of us, the lulls between booming essays and satisfying works snatches our focus. We are weighed down during the in-between time, discouraged by all the goodness we aren’t producing. We’re even discouraged when our creations are duller than we think they ought to be. We’re seeking perfection in every little thing we think of, put our hands to, talk of. We expect to resemble the numerous Instagram-worthy, faultless images that we scroll through daily.
But we can’t be. Because we’re not. We are real people with imperfections and obligations and emotions. I really, really want to create from scratch every single recipe that I put on my blog or sell as my own, but I can’t! Every recipe stems from another, and I don’t have the capacity to literally recreate every dessert known to mankind. So I go from the creators who preceded me. And that’s how it works. I create and I learn and I tweak, and then maybe I’ll create something new. But that is okay; I am still creating.
We are free to be imperfect because our gaping holes have been filled! As Emily Freeman repeats again and again in A Million Little Ways, any little single bit of art that we create is a reflection of our Creator. Every tiny piece is like a magnified mirror of the King, and so when we create we give the glory to Someone else. So- pressure is off, friends! Create in whatever capacity you can, free from the pressure of the world around us. Create and enjoy the process and relish the result, in full knowledge that your Maker is rejoicing over you as you do.
And thus, I am about to shamelessly give you another fact of life: Martha Stewart’s Key Lime Pie rocks.
It’s our “family recipe,” but really it belongs to her. I can’t take the credit for the ingredients or their ratios or their methods, but I can take the credit for creating that single pie. And ya know, that is good in and of itself. One day maybe I’ll work with it and concoct a recipe of my own for this glorious pie. But in the mean time, as we enjoy these beautiful buds on the trees and the warm air that beckons our noses, here is my creation (are you tired of that word yet?), as formed by Martha.
Key Lime Pie
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 stick unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 Tbs sugar
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
1 Tbs lime zest, plus extra for garnish
1 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk
4 egg yolks
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
Preheat oven to 375F. Spray a 9-inch pie pan or tart pan.
To make the crust, mix the graham cracker crumbs, butter, and sugar in a bowl. Press evenly into the pie pan and bake for about 10 minutes, until lightly browned. Set aside to cool and lower the oven to 325F.
In another bowl, whisk together the lime juice, zest, sweetened condensed milk, and egg yolks. Pour into the crust and bake about 15 minutes, until the filling is set but not runny. Cool to room temperature.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk the heavy cream until fluffy, adding a few tablespoons of sugar to taste as you go. Spread the whipped cream over the cooled pie and top with more lime zest (like, a lot of lime zest).
Serve, relishing your creation and the beautiful springtime weather we get to enjoy. Cheers, creator friends.