Here in Florida, summer has definitely arrived. For a little while now it has been in the high 80's, sometimes breaking past the 90 mark. So on top of new homemade ice cream recipes (at least one of which is coming soon) and other frozen treats to keep us cool, I have a feeling a bunch of citrus and lemony recipes will be on the way. When it's hot out, there is something very refreshing about biting into a tangy, tart lemon dessert. This is the first lemon recipe of the season, and it was a good one. These bars were my first attempt at lemon squares and it was largely a success. My only complaint is that it was a bit thin. While we enjoyed it very very much, next time I might double the filling and 1.5x the crust... or just bake it in a smaller pan for a little extra height.
Lemon Squares, adapted from Epicurious
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, room temp
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
4 large eggs, room temp
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (strained, to eliminate seeds/pulp)
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 recipe pre-baked shortbread base
Line a 9 x 13 inch pan (or smaller for thicker bars) with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350.
Cut butter into 1/4 - 1/2 inch thick slices. Combine all ingredients in a food process with the dough blade, and process until mixture begins to form small lumps. Use a spatula to wipe down sides of bowl when necessary.
Break up the mixture into the prepared pan and press down evenly. Bake in the middle of the oven until golden, about 20 minutes.
While shortbread is in the oven, prepare the lemon filling.
In a bowl, whisk the room temperature eggs and granulated sugar together until combined. Then, stir in the lemon juice and flour. Pour the lemon mixture over the hot shortbread. Reduce oven to 300 and bake until set, approximately 30 minutes.
Cool completely in the pan and then chill. When chilled, cut into squares. Lemon squares keep, covered and chilled, about 3 days. Serve topped with homemade whipped cream.