Lemon Curd Squares + The Winner

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My Dad hates citrus in baked goods. Thus, I have always been leery of cooking with lemons, oranges, limes, etc.

Reuben loves lemon bars. When he informed me of this, I promised to make him some. I searched the internet over for the perfect recipe, and settled one entitled “Lemon Curd Squares.” When I saw that the ingredient list included cream, I knew I needed to make them.

And I wasn’t disappointed in my choice. Reuben loves them. He requested I send several bars in his lunch so he could share them with the other guys. That day he posted on my Facebook wall: “Best lemon bars ever. :)” <— Proudest. Moment. Ever.

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These lemon bars are the perfect medium between overpoweringly sweet and mouth-puckering sour. The crust is wonderfully tasty, enhanced by a smidgen of cinnamon. Dust with a little powdered sugar, and you have an elegant, scrumptious dessert.

Lemon Curd Squares

Adapted from Willams-Sanoma | Printable Recipe | Makes 12 Bars

Ingredients:

For the crust:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour (I used half white, half whole wheat)
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar (I used demerara)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 8 Tbs. (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

For the lemon filling:

  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar (I used ground demerara)
  • 2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest (optional)
  • 3 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 3 Tbs. heavy cream
  • Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting (optional)

Directions:

To make the crust:

1.) Preheat an oven to 350°F. Lightly grease an 8-inch square baking dish (preferably glass) and line with parchment paper.

In a food processor, combine the flour, granulated sugar, salt and cinnamon. Pulse briefly until blended. Add the butter and pulse until the dough forms moist crumbs and sticks together when pinched, about 1 minute. There should be no trace of dryness. Press the dough into the bottom and 1 inch up the sides of the prepared baking dish, lightly flouring your fingertips if necessary to prevent them from sticking. Bake the crust until pale golden, 20 to 22 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let the crust cool completely. Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F.

To make the filling:

1.) In a bowl, whisk together the granulated sugar, flour, salt and lemon zest. Add the eggs, lemon juice and cream and whisk until just blended. Carefully pour the mixture over the baked crust.

Bake until the filling is set but still jiggles slightly when the dish is gently shaken, about 20 minutes, or longer if using a metal pan. Transfer the pan to the wire rack and let cool for about 30 minutes. Run the tip of a small knife along the inside of the dish to loosen the crust from the sides, then let cool completely.

Cut into 12 small rectangles (fewer if you want larger bars). Grab the sides of parchment paper that stick out from the pan and carefully remove the bars from the dish. Just before serving, sift a dusting of confectioners sugar over the bars.

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Now for the Shabby Apple Giveaway Winner!

capture31The winner is: Commenter #55: Michelle who said, “Admiral! Why? Because I serve in the Navy and I absolutely adore a beautiful sailor dress that is not too short or revealing. It is beautiful!!!”

Congratulations, Michelle!

Thank you to all who entered my giveaway. Hope you all have a very Merry Christmas!

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Snickerdoodle Cheesecake Bites + Lovely Things

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I love these Snickerdoodle Cheesecake Bites. They are yummy. Scrumptious. Delicious. Make them today! Head over to the Tasty Kitchen blog to see my step-by-step instructions and the recipe: {link}

Things that make me smile:

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This kitchen. So rustic.

Ornate cooling rack. I want this something fierce.

Twig mini caramel apples. Adorable.

Whole Grain Pumpkin Pancakes with Apple Maple Compote via Honey and Jam. Looks scrumptious.

Dusky Caramel and Raspberry Crepe Cake via Poires au Chocolat. If you haven’t visited Emma’s blog, you need to.

Méditerranée Coconut Yogurt

This is the best yogurt. Ever. Creamy and smooth.

KAMI Mugs 

Wooden cups.

This dress. I would wear.

These earrings. So pretty.

What lovely things are you enjoying today?

Raspberry Cheesecake Brownies

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What do you do when you have an abundance of fresh raspberries + a desire to bake something scrumptious? Make these Raspberry Cheese Brownies, of course! Dark chocolate brownies on the bottom, cheesecake batter, swirls of brownie batter, and raspberries poked in.

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Many thanks to Kayleigh of Kayotic Kitchen.  When I asked the twitter community for a delicious raspberry recipe, she promptly replied with a link to this recipe. It is certainly a keeper.

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Raspberry Crumb Bars


One evening, when I was in one my baking moods, I felt like making something special for breakfast. I saw these over at Smitten Kitchen and decided that they needed to be made. Of course I made my usual adjustments – whole wheat flour and a natural sweetener. I also left out the lemon zest (as we had none).

To be honest, I thought these bars were a little on the tart side. However, I was overall very pleased with them, and will most likely try them again.

We served them with both liquid and whipped cream. Delicious.

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Raspberry Crumb Breakfast Bars
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

Ingredients:

For the crust and crumb:
1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
1 cup Demerara sugar or Sucanat or rapadura
1 1/4 cups rolled oats
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces

For the raspberry filling:
1/4 cup Demerara sugar or Sucanat or rapadura
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
1 pound raspberries, fresh or frozen
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled

Directions:

Make the crust and crumb:

1) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter the bottom and sides of a 9-by-13-inch glass baking dish. Put a long piece of parchment paper in the bottom of the pan, letting the parchment extend up the two short sides of the pan and overhang slightly on both ends. This will make it easy to remove the bars from the pan after they have baked.

2) Put the flour, sugar, oats, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon in a food processor. Pulse in short bursts until combined. Add the butter and pulse until loose crumbs form.

3) Reserve 1 1/2 cup of the mixture and set aside. Pour the rest of the mixture into the prepared pan and use your hands or the back of a large wooden spoon to push the crust into an even layer at the bottom of the pan. The crust should touch the sides of the pan. Bake until golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let the crust cool. Keep the oven on while you make the raspberry filling.

Make the raspberry filling:

4) In a medium bowl, whisk the sugar, cinnamon, and flour together. Add the raspberries, lemon juice and butter and use your hands to toss gently until the raspberries are evenly coated.

Assemble and bake the bars:

5) Spread the raspberry filling evenly on top of the cooled crust. Sprinkle the reserved crust mixture evenly on top of the filling.

6) Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking, until the top is golden brown and the filling starts to bubble around the edges.

Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely, then cut into squares. Serve plane or with liquid or whipped cream. The bars can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to two days.

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