The Sprouted Kitchen by Sara Forte, photographed by Hugh Forte. Hopefully hardcover, matte paper, intriguing images, produce focused, approachable recipes... a book. We're creating one. Exciting and petrifying, right?

I left my big-girl-career-job last March, knowing that it was not my future. I enjoyed the work and the people, but despite the pragmatist in me, I had a hope that maybe I could take a chance at doing what I actually enjoyed. Hugh motivated me to take the leap, and a lot has happened between then and now. Who knew that months later, the opportunity to write a book would find it's way into my inbox? Long story short, there have been months of emails with Ten Speed Press, lots of questions and me seeking advice from a couple people I respect who have published cookbooks of their own.

I love to eat, I find it gratifying to experiment and end up with something good every so often. I believe in encouraging people to eat well by providing practical tools/recipes to fill their bodies with good things (that may include a bit of ice cream pie) and most importantly, to end up at a table, spending time with each other, because eating is an experience and we all need to be fed. This blog has given me space to do that, and I want to be better; I want to keep learning, and to learn more you must be challenged. Through your kind comments telling me that you made something on here and liked it (which p.s., makes my day), or that you enjoyed the pictures, or resonate with something I wrote, I have been inspired and fulfilled. So, even though I didn't think the opportunity to write a book would come about as quickly as it did, and I may not be completely ready for the task, I needed to say yes. We are beyond excited, but because you people are my trusted internet friends, I am scared and intimidated to enter a market that is inundated with so much incredible work.

I am off to a bit of a slow start, but I am at a grocery store or farm stand every other day, so we're on our way. Hugh is my live in taste tester, and so far hasn't complained about the four dozen carrot date muffins I made before I felt the recipe was just right. It's been fun to brainstorm the feeling we want this book to evoke - to dream together.

So I made this lemon meringue ice cream pie in honor of the big news. I love the different layers of flavor and texture here; crunchy to creamy to tangy to pillowy golden meringue. It may not be ice cream weather where you are, but trust me, it doesn't matter. A slice of pie and a thanks to all of you for making our corner of the internet a place to dream big.

Serves 8
Slightly adapted from Jamie's Restaurant in Florida via Bon Appetit

There are a few softening and freezing steps, but overall, this is a very easy pie. If you were in a pinch, store bought lemon curd will work in the layers here. The homemade version can be made ahead of time.

See our Lemon Curd recipe here

1 1/2 Cups Finely Chopped Pecans
1/4 Cup Evaporated Cane Juice/Sugar
1/4 Cup Unsalted Butter, melted

3 Cup Good Quality, Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

3 Large Egg Whites
Pinch of Cream of Tartar
5 Tablespoons Evaporated Cane Juice/Sugar

1. Make the curd according to instructions and chill for a few hours to firm up.
2. Preheat oven to 400'. Mix the pecans, sugar and butter together until moistened. Press the pecan mixture on the bottom and up the sides of a 9'' diameter glass pie dish, the mixture will be crumbly. Bake until the crust is slightly toasted, about 12 minutes. The crust will have slipped down the sides, use the back of a spoon to press it back in to place. Cool and then freeze the crust for 30 minutes.
3. Dollop 1 1/2 Cups of the softened ice cream over the crust, and spread into an even layer. Spread lemon curd over the ice cream and freeze until firm. About 1 1/2 hours. Dollop the remaining ice cream over the lemon curd, and freeze again. You can do this in advance and finish it with meringue when ready to serve.
4. Preheat oven to 500'. To make the meringue, beat the egg whites with an electric mixer until frothy, add the pinch of cream of tartar and gradually add the sugar while mixer is running. Beat until stiff peaks form. Spread the meringue on top of the pie in an even layer. Place the pie in the oven until meringue is golden in spots, about 3-4 minutes. You could use a butane torch as an alternative if you own one. Cut and serve immediately.

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  • Response

Reader Comments (111)

I have just come across your blog and really enjoy reading it. Your recipes sound delicious and the photos are so lovely.

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCheryl

Congrats on the book! All of your readers can't wait for it to come out. (This pie looks amazing, btw.)

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFoodiebia

Eeeeeee!!! So so so exciting! There is so much happiness bursting through this blog lately, and I'm loving it. Sending big hugs your way, Sara!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJacqui

Hooooray! and many congrats! Can't wait to read it -- and hear all about the process!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commenternicole

Congrats! Lots of big news in your world these days. Loving it. I know it will grace my bookshelf when ready.


February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMichelle

Sara! What happy news! I just know the book will be amazing. Good luck with everything involved :)

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLaken

That's wonderful news! I love sprouted kitchen and can't wait to see the cookbook! Good luck!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

This looks so wonderful, and the tone of these photos make me want to eat it on a sunny day after going swimming!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commentersweet road

Congratulations for taking up a new challenge in life Sara! I've always enjoyed your blog. When your book come out, I will be the first to buy it!!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMay

What a wonderful team the pair of you make! Congrats on deciding to make your very own book. Can't wait to see the finished project.

(P.S. YUM on this recipe!!!)

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDanielle

I'd buy it! Hands down. :) And I don't often buy cookbooks...

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMadeline Jacks

very very exciting! Your recipes and the pics are all spectacular! I'll be first in line to buy!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterfigandfennel

Ooh! I'm *totally* getting your book! My husband and I have made about half of your recipes, and we've loved everything so far!! This pie might be next! Yum!:)

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBlaze

Congratulations! I can't wait to order a copy when it comes out! Love your blog and I know the book will be just as amazing if not better. Cheers!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAllison

So excited to read the news! You & Hugh are going to make a wonderful book. And that pie looks like a dream.

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJames Moes

So so so exciting to hear! Major congrats to you both :). I know it is going to be a beautiful book, filled with delicious food. Yay Sara and Hugh!!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLauren

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Josephina Mydreama, Sara Forte. Sara Forte said: My heart is racing from this post. There may be an ice cream pie around here somewhere to help with that: [...]

Congratulations on such great news!
I can only imagine what a great book this will be!
(The pie and every other recipe here already prove that!)

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnnika

Congratulations! I'm glad you changed careers and started this blog and took that leap of faith. Can't wait for your book to come out not only for your words and recipes but also for Hugh's photos.

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterart and lemons

Congrats!! I can't wait to have this book in my kitchen!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAmy Reams

Yay! Congratulations you guys! Can't wait to see and hear more about it.

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJacqui

Oh man, Sara, this is so exciting!! Congrats, congrats! I cannot WAIT to see it!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKasey

congratulations! i'm sure it will be absolutely gorgeous and can't wait to read it. :) you are an inspiration

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMelinda

Oh wow! What a dream come true! Congratulations!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAnna

Congratulations Sara & Hugh - you two are such a great team! can't wait to see the creations of yours to appear on printed paper (and yes, matte!) good luck!!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterchika

Really can't wait to pick up a copy! Congrats a million.

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCindy

Congratulations! I'm itching to buy this book already – I'm sure it will be full of beautiful photographs and food!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAmber

Congrats!! So super exciting and well deserved! I can't wait to pick up my copy :)

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterjen@greenweddingshoes

Oh many congratulations! I am sure it will be a terrific tasty book, and beautiful too.

congrats on the book news. that's seriously exciting stuff. I can't wait to see how it turns out, because with your beautiful photos I'm sure it's going to be coffee table quality & not just cookbook shelf status!!! :)

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commentersarah

your book sounds so lovely and exciting! what an adventure -- have so much fun with it, although it will be hard work, it will be so gratifying to hold the weight of your completed book in your hands. I can't wait to read it!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterlauren @ spiced plate

whoooooa!! congratulations!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterken and courtney kienow

congratulations!! I can't wait to buy the book.

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKat Braman

congratulations! i have been following your blog for a while now and love it so much. i am excited for you.

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterShelby Crandall

the recipes will be so lovely, but i bet i just repeatedly open the book for the PHOTOS!!!!!!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commenteralana (at) the food

Congratulations! Your blog is beautiful and I'm sure your book will be too! Looking forward to it. And this pie is absolutely heavenly :)

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNancy

Inparable. Godspeed.

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKip-O

Congratulations!! What wonderful news! So exciting (and the pie looks great)! :)

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNina | Salt

Yes!! Congratulations to you both. I can't wait to cook from it. (Also, matte paper - fanTAStic.)

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJess

And I thought this (sprouted) couldn't get any better-Congratulations, to you both!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commentermaggie

Incredible news! Congratulations to you both, I absolutely look forward to seeing your book :)

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJayme

Will most definitely be buying your book, congrats!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterVeronica

I am so desperately excited for you! And for me. And not just because lemon desserts are quite possibly my favourite type of dessert ever. I'm overjoyed that your leap of faith paid off in such a marvellous way, and I can't wait o reap the benefits (via Book Depository, as my guess is the delicious, delicious, inspiring book won't be published in Australia straight away). HURRAH!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHannah

congratulations you two!!! can't wait to read the book... such wonderful news.

as ever,


February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterleela

i am so very, very, VERY excited about this news! the moment i found your blog i was hooked, and i wait in patient excitement for every single post.

your chai recipe has trumped every chai i've ever had. i fell in love when i took my first sip & regularly bring a mason jar of it into the office where my co-worker & i treat ourselves to a hot mug of deliciousness in the afternoons...thanking you for posting it with each sip. any other chai has been ruined...and we couldn't be more grateful!

it is totally normal for one of us to see a new post go live & read it aloud - or read individually & coo over our favorites of hugh's photos or gush about your inventive way to use a favorite ingredient. for example, asparagus - love it, but beluga lentils...i never knew about those little gems...they immediately became a pantry staple.

anyway, all of this to say, i am so happy for your fun news, and i absolutely cannot wait to see everything unfold. it's going to be incredible...i already know it. if i could reserve my copy now, i would ;o) all the best to you in your new dream-achieving adventure!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterheather

congrats! if your blog is any preview, then your book is sure to be a lovely success!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commentercindy

So excited about the book!! Can I pre-order it yet?!? I share your same philosophies on life and food and just know your book will be incredible! Good luck with everything!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKristen

Oooh, I can't wait!! What great news and the most excellent congratulations! Hurrah!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterkickpleat

I happen to come across the picture of the last picture of the merinque pie on your site and began reading your lovely blog! I had forgotten just how much I loved meringue pie as a child and the picture brings back so many warm memories. I like the crop/view of this picture becaues it leaves more to the imagination, making the pie even more tantalizing! Looking forward to reading more!

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCorina Acosta

Massive congratulations! You must be so excited.

Gorgeous pie, too...

February 4, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterEmma @ Poires au Chocolat

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