Shortbread with a Pucker

Posted by on Mar 30, 2016 in Desserts | 1 comment

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Beckie, my childhood friend, messaged me wondering how she and her daughters might host a bridal shower dessert bar.  I suggested mini sandwiches and desserts, including lemon bars.

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For many years, my go-to lemon squares were baked on a large sheet pan which produced two dozen.

That changed when I found Zov’s Bistro, famous Luscious Lemon Squares, in a coffee table cookbook, ZOV, Recipes and Memories from the Heart.

Nowadays, these lofty, rich shortbread beauties layered with bright tart lemon curd, beg to be celebrated, and they couldn’t be easier to prepare.  Exercising a few extra steps produces clean and glossy bites.

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To get started, spray an 8-inch square baking pan with cooking oil; then line it with parchment paper spraying the layers with more cooking oil.  This creates a handle to lift the dessert out of the pan; in addition, my baking pan has a removable bottom.

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Using a food processor, pulse together, flour, powdered sugar, salt,

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and cold butter just until moist crumbs are formed.

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Drop the crumbs into the prepared pan and lightly press them into an even layer;

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bake until pale golden.

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In my oven, this happens in about 20 minutes, while I prepare the curd. (No need to wash the food processor either!)

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Whisk the topping ingredients: sugar, eggs, flour, lemon juice, and zest, just until combined.

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If you over process the curd, too much air may be incorporated; this may cause cracking.  Sometimes it happens anyway—

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No need to cool the crust, pour the topping over the crust and return it to bake and set up, for another 20 minutes.

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Allow the pastry to cool completely; then cover loosely and refrigerate until cold.

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Later, lift from the pan and set on a cutting board.

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I divide it into quarters; work each quarter into 4 squares with a sharp knife.

Using a small strainer, dust plenty of powdered sugar over the lemon squares; carefully place each one on a festive serving platter or cake stand.

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These are for you, Beckie!

Zov's Bistro Lemon Squares

Ingredients

  • Crust:
  • Nonstick vegetable spray
  • ½ cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • Lemon Topping:
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 6 large eggs
  • 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon zest
  • ¾ cup fresh lemon juice
  • Powdered sugar, for dusting

Instructions

  1. To make the crust: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, F. Spray an 8-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Blend the butter, powdered sugar, and salt in a food processor until moist crumbs form. Add the flour. Using the on/off button, pulse until the flour is incorporated and moist crumbs form. Gently press the dough evenly over the bottom of the prepared dish (not the sides). Bake until the crust is pale golden on top, about 20-30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, to prepare the lemon topping, Whisk the granulated sugar, eggs, flour, lemon peel, and salt in a large bowl to blend. Whisk in the lemon juice. Pour the lemon mixture over the hot baked crust. Bake until the lemon mixture is just set in the center, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool completely. Cover and refrigerate until cold.
  3. Cut the pastry into squares. Dust with powdered sugar and serve.
  4. Makes 16 squares
  5. Recipe Source: Zov’s Bistro, Tustin, (Orange County) California
http://cococooks.net/shortbread-with-a-pucker/

One Comment

  1. 3-31-2016

    YUM!!!!

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