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Lemon Squares recipe

These lemon squares are sure to be a welcometreat with their tender shortbread crust and sweet-tart lemoncurd filling.

Recipe: Lemon Squares

8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, chilled and cut into1/2-inch pieces
1/2 cup confectioners’ (powdered) sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup cake flour
Optional: 1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted and finely chopped
Lemon Layer:
Zest of 3 large lemons, finely grated
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
4 large eggs
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2/3 cup fresh lemon juice, strained

  • Prepare a 9-inch baking pan by eitherspraying the bottom and sides generously with a non-stick bakingspray or brush with surface with softened butter, dusting itlightly with flour.
  • To assemble the crust, use a food processorfitted with the metal blade attachment. Combine the confectioners’sugar, salt, all-purpose and cake flour altogether pulsing themachine to mix well. Scatter the chilled butter piecesover the dry ingredients and process mixture briefly, pulsingmachine until dough just begins to come together. If adding nutsdo so towards the very end of processing. With lightly flouredfingers remove dough from bowl and press into an even layer overthe bottom of the prepared pan. Chill briefly in freezer or refrigeratoruntil it’s firm, about 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C)and bake crust 15 to 20 minutes or until the surface appearsa light golden brown all-over. After crust is baked reduce oventemperature to 300°F (150°C).
  • While crust is baking prepare lemon custardlayer. In a large mixing bowl, grate the zest of 3 large lemons,which have been washed and dried, careful to remove only thefragrant yellow skin, not the bitter white pith which lies underneathit. Add zest to the flour, eggs, and sugar whisking well by hand.In a steady stream, add the lemon juice, strained of all seedsand pulp, whisk until incorporated (noting you should not whisktoo vigorous creating an undesirable foam and froth across thesurface).
  • To bake, gently pour the custard overthe warm crust, return to 300°F (150°C) oven and bakean additional 20 to 25 minutes, carefully rotating the pan 2to 3 times while it bakes. Lemon layer is cooked when the custardis just barely set all over, with the center remaining slightlyloose but not watery. Custard will continue to bake a few minuteslonger after it has been removed from the oven. Cool thoroughlyand sprinkle generously with confectioners’ sugar shortly beforeserving. Store well wrapped up to 3 days.

    Makes 12 bars.

    Lemon Bars – Recipe by Laura Vitale – Laura in the Kitchen Episode 136

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