Lemon, it’s hard to find somebody who doesn’t like it. I know a person who is allergic to lemon, can’t touch it at all and, nevertheless, doesn’t stop to consume lemon, as it was the forbidden fruit.
I venture to say lemon plays well with everything; fish, meat, pork, chicken, in the cake, pie or tea. What about flan?? If you want to impress just add a few zests onto the recipe. You are going to receive a lot of compliments about your cooking skills.
Sometimes I even think it’s underused and should appear more frequently. That’s why I get very excited when I find a recipe where lemon is the major ingredient.
Like these bars, so traditional in American bake-sale and sadly unknown in Brazil. And, although it’s not a new stuff in this part of the world, I had to show them in my virtual recipe notebook.
The recipe comes one more time from the book Cookies, by Martha Stewart. And as the author says, these little squares are the most intensely lemony ones I’ve tried.
That’s an easy recipe. But remember, the key to success is the frozen butter and frozen crust; don’t skip these steps.
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Butter a 9 by 13-inch glass baking dish, and line with parchment.
Make crust: Grate butter on a cheese grater with large holes; set aside. Whisk together flour, confectioners’ sugar and salt in a large bowl. Add butter; stir with wooden spoon until combined and mixture looks crumbly.
Transfer mixture to prepared dish; press evenly onto bottom with your hands. Freeze crust 15 minutes. Bake until crust is slightly golden, 16 to 18 minutes. Leave oven on.
Meanwhile, make filling: Whisk together eggs, granulated sugar, flour and salt in a bowl until smooth. Stir in lemon juice and milk. Pour over hot crust.
Reduce oven temperature to 325ºF, and bake until filling is set and edges are slightly golden brown, about 18 minutes.
Let cool slightly in a cool rack. Lift out; let cool completely on a wire rack before cutting into 2-inch squares. Dust with confectioners’ sugar. Lemon squares can be refrigerated in airtight containers up to 2 days.
Just a few more things to say. The book tells you to use parchment paper but I didn’t and the bars came out of the pan easily. So, it’s up to you.
And, if you want, you can divide the ingredients and make half recipe. In this case, use an 8×8 inch square pan.