Monday, May 12, 2014

Sunshine in a Square

Hey Y'all!
I hope everyone had a lovely weekend. My Mother's Day had beautiful weather and a sky full of airplanes and paratroopers. It was a great day!!!! So great!
(Yes that is a person riding on TOP of the plane) 

But before my Sunday of basking in the wonders of my former military home life. I had the urge to bake. It doesn't happen often but when it happened Saturday I acted on it and made some of my quick and easy favorites....Lemon Squares! The only way this could be easier is if it didn't require baking.
The crust is essentially a butter cookie crust. 2 sticks of softened butter, 1/2 cup of sugar, and 2 cups of flour. That's it. Nothing fancy, although you could get a little fancy since it's such a simple recipe. 

Add sugar to the softened butter. 

And then add the flour. 

Be careful when mixing, start on low so that flour doesn't fly everywhere. 

Mix until blended together, a soft dough should form. It should press together easily but not be sticky. 

Press the dough out into a pan. I like the 8x11 inch pan because it creates a nice thick bar with excellent crust to filling ratio. I like my lemon squares to feel like bars, not iced cookies. 

The dough goes into the oven at 350 for 20-25 minutes. 

While the crust bakes the filling can be set up. 
1/4 cup and 1TBSP of flour

1 1/2 cups sugar

4 large eggs and 2/3 cups of fresh squeezed lemon juice 

All ingredients go into the bowl. 
(Did I mention how easy this recipe is?)

Blend mixture well. 
I just used the same bowl and beaters from the crust mixing. 

A few additional stirs worked out the lumps. 

The crust comes out lightly brown. A nice little tip is an underbaked crust is worse than an overbaked crust in this case. 

Pour the lemon mixture right over the crust. Be careful not to pour too fast or you risk losing some of that delicious sweet tart goodness. 

The pan goes back into the oven at 350 for another 20-25 minutes. 
When it comes out the middle shouldn't jiggle, but it won't be completely firm either. The edges get that lovely brown color to them that just screams crusty chewiness. Mmmmmm

The most difficult part about this recipe is waiting the eternity it seems to take for these beautiful pockets of sunshine to cool down. Once they are no longer warm I like to cut them up and stash them in the fridge. A nice cold lemon square is like a little piece of joy in your mouth. (Did I mention that I love most things lemon?) 
These got a super thumbs up in the house. I think I might turn the crust into butter cookies sometime. I'm sure they would go perfectly with a big cup of tea. 
Do you have any quick fix baking favorites? 
Peace and Namaste Y'all 

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