New Year, New Start.

First off let me start by wishing you all a happy new year.. May it bring upon you all the joy and success that you desire..
I’ve been thinking a lot lately of my new year’s resolutions, although I know I won’t be keeping any of them by the mid January, but for some reason I know I’m gonna need a change. I don’t know what or how, all I know is I need to figure out what I’m gonna be doing this while.
However, one thing I know for sure is that this is gonna be my last blog entry for now. I need to focus on my senior year. This doesn’t mean my passion for baking and food is gone, it’s still there, and I know this blog is gonna be waiting for me when I’m done.
With all that being said, I’ll leave you with my new year’s desserts. I couldn’t be happier that my blog took it’s hiatus with these beautiful Lemon Squares..

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Ingredients

– 175 grams cold unsalted butter, diced
– 1¾ cups, plus 3 tablespoons, all-purpose flour
– ⅔ cup powdered (confectioners’) sugar, plus more for dusting at the end
– ¼ cup cornstarch
– ¾ teaspoon salt
– 4 eggs
– 1⅓ cups granulated sugar
– 1½ teaspoons lemon zest, about 2 lemons
– ⅔ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, about 4 lemons
– ¼ cup whole milk

Directions:

For the Crust:

  1. Line two 8-inch square baking dishes with parchment paper. Let a bit of paper hang on either side, this will allow you to easily pull out the bars once they are baked and cooled. Set the pan(s) aside.
  2. In a your food processor, combine the 1¾ cups flour, powdered sugar, the cornstarch, and salt. Turn the mixer on low, to avoid the flour flying everywhere, and mix until evenly combined.
  3. Add the diced cold, very cold, butter into the dry ingredients. You can use two forks, a pastry blender, or the mixer to do this. Try not to use your hands as the heat that you generate will warm up the butter, and we want cold butter. Cut in the butter until it resembles course crumbs the size of peas. You’ll know it is ready when you squeeze the crumbs and they hold together tightly.
  4. Pour the crumbs evenly between the two baking dishes. Pat the crumbs down using your hands into a half a centimeter thick crust. Press it into an even layer and allow the crust to come up the sides slightly. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

While the crust is chilling, preheat the oven to 180° C.

After half an hour, bake the crust until golden brown, about 20 to 25 minutes.

For the Lemon topping:

  1. While the crust bakes, assemble the filling. In a large bowl whisk together the eggs and granulated sugar. Whip on high until the eggs have become thick and pale in color, about 5 minutes. Add the remaining 3 tablespoons flour, and lemon zest and whisk to combine. Stir in the lemon juice, milk and lemon liqueur if using, mix once more.

To Assemble:

  1. Once the crust is golden brown, remove it from the oven and reduce the temperature. Stir the filling once again and pour it onto the warm crust. Bake until the filling is set (it doesn’t move when you jiggle the pan) about 20 minutes.
  2. Transfer to a wire rack and allow to cool completely. Using the excess parchment paper as handles, pull out the lemon bars gently and place on a cutting surface. Peel off the parchment paper. Using a serrated (bread) knife cut the bars into even squares.
  3. Dust the bars with powdered sugar for garnish and serve immediately. Place any leftovers in the fridge, wrapped in plastic wrap or stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Enjoy!
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