this is for WildSwede over on the LA Board who's sweet enough to be thinking about a friend's milestone...
Shaker Lemon Bars (you can sub any citrus fruit)
Makes about 5 dozen
Begin step one the day before you plan to bake these cookies.
2 lemons, washed and dried
2 cups plus 3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 1/4 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups all-purpose flour
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
Confectioners' sugar, for sifting
1. Slice lemons as thinly as possible; remove seeds. Toss slices with 2 cups sugar; transfer mixture to a flat resealable plastic container. Place in the refrigerator overnight.
2. Place butter, salt, remaining 3/4 cup sugar, and flour in the bowl of a food processor. Process until mixture is crumbly and starts to hold together.
3. Heat oven to 400o. Line a 12-by-17-inch baking pan with parchment paper. Press dough evenly into the bottom and up the sides of the pan, making sure there are no holes. There should be at least 1/2-inch crust of dough going up the sides of the pan. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely, about 15 minutes
4. Place lemon-sugar mixture and eggs in the bowl of a food processor. Process until lemon rinds are in 1/4- to 1/2-inch pieces, 30 to 40 seconds. Pour mixture over cookie crust. Bake until set, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Trim 1/2 inch around edges of pan. Cut into about sixty 1 1/4-by-2-inch pieces. Sift confectioners’ sugar over cookies.
Cranberry Lemon Squares
Makes about 16
These tart bars use dried cranberries or any dried fruit instead of fresh, so you can make them any time of year.
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 12 pieces, plus more for pan
1 1/2 cups dried cranberries(about 7 ounces, available at specialty-food stores)
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar, plus more for dusting
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup freshly squeezed plus 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice(about 3 lemons)
1. Preheat oven to 325°. Butter an 8-inch square baking pan, and set aside.
2. In a medium saucepan, combine cranberries and 2 cups water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, and cook, stirring occasionally, until water has been absorbed, about 25 minutes.
3. Transfer cranberry mixture to bowl of a food processor; chop coarsely. Transfer to a bowl, and set aside.
4. In bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine confectioners’ sugar and 3/4 cup flour. Add butter, beating on low speed until mixture forms pea-size pieces. Press batter into baking pan.
5. Bake until golden, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
6. Beat eggs and granulated sugar until smooth. Add lemon juice; beat to combine. Add remaining 1/4 cup flour, and beat to combine; set lemon mixture aside.
7. Reduce oven temperature to 300°. Spread cranberry mixture over cooked crust. Pour lemon mixture over the cranberry mixture. Bake until set, about 40 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool, 40 minutes. Chill 4 hours. To serve, cut into squares, and dust with confectioners’ sugar.
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