Lemons & Lemon Squares

At some point last June we purchased a big bag of Lemons from our local warehouse store. Fast forward a couple of weeks and it was time I needed to do something with them. But, it was a huge bag of lemons! What to do?For preserving the lemons I decided to zest and juice them. Both the zest and juice can be easily frozen. The trick is remembering to use them!

I zested the lemons and divided the zest up into 1 tablespoon mounds on a cutting board covered in plastic wrap. I covered the zest mounds again and froze them on the cutting board in the freezer.

Lemons – Zesting

Lemons – Zest spit into Tablespoon Mounds for the Freezer

I split the juice into 1/2 cup packets for the freezer.

Lemons – Lemon Juice

Meanwhile, all this work deserved some kitchen joy as well.

Lemon Squares were the order of the day. I looked on line at my favourite sites and settled on this recipe.

For the crust I added 3/4 cup of Sifted All-Purpose Flour, 1/3 cup of  Sifted Icing Sugar, 1/4 Cup of Sifted Corn Starch, 1/4 Teaspoon of Salt and 1/2 cup of Unsalted Butter Cubes into a bowl. 

Lemon Squares – Preparing the Base

Using a pastry blender I cut the butter into the mixture until the mixture looked like course crumbles.

Lemon Squares – The Base

I put the mixture in a parchment lined pan and pressed it into the corners and ensured the base was flat. I put the pan in the fridge to chill for about 20 minutes. Then, off to a 325˚ oven for about 20 minutes and then let it cool.

Lemon Squares – The Base in the Pan

While the base was cooling: In a bowl I added 4 Large Eggs, 1 Cup of Sugar and mixed them until thick and frothy, about 5 minutes. Next I added 2/3 cup of Fresh Lemon Juice, 1/4 Cup All-Purpose Flour, 1/2 teaspoon of Baking Powder and 1/2 Teaspoon of salt and mixed everything well.

Lemon Squares – Mixing The filling

I carefully poured the filling over the slightly cooled base and it was back to the oven again for 20 minutes.

Lemon Squares – Ready for the Pan

Out of the oven I let the pan cool fully.

Lemon Squares – Cooling from the Oven

Sadly it was late at night so the pan cooled over night. In the morning I cut the baked and cooled lemon squares into 16 pieces, sprinkled with icing sugar and sent them off to work. It was early in the morning when I did this and I missed taking a final glory shot. Reports were that they were great!

Bakers Notes:

  • Don’t forget to chill the crust. An important step!
  • Use fresh lemon juice otherwise avoid this recipe
  • Pretty quick and easy

Cherry Chews

This is one of my favorites. Cherry chews are actually a square and not a cookie but I think the maraschino cherries make it kind of festive. Use both red and green if you want. These are great all year round too!

The recipe comes from a 1950’s cookbook. I think only a few pages remain which include this recipe and the previously published shortbread.

Cherry Chews

More after the jump…….
I made two batches using:
For the base:
2 Cup of Flour
2 Cup of Large Flake Rolled Oats
2 Cup of Brown Sugar
2 teaspoon of Baking Soda
1 Cup of Butter
1/2 teaspoon of Salt

For the filling:
8 Eggs – Lightly Beaten
4 Cups of Light Brown Sugar
2  teaspoons of Almond Extract
8 Tablespoons of Flour
2 teaspoons of Salt
2 Cups of Shredded Sweetened Coconut
6 Cups of haled Maraschino Cherries
4 Cups of Pecan Halves

Base: Mix ingredients together
Base: Press mixture into a 1/2 sheet pan and bake
Filling: Cut the Maraschino Cherries
Filling: Mix all of the ingredients together then add cherries and pecans
Spread filling over cooked base then bake!

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