Lemon Squares

I had a craving for bright and lemony. And for once did not want any lemonade (shocking, I know) so I made these totally satisfying lemon squares.

Ingredients
3/4 cup flour
1/4 cup icing sugar
1/8 tea spoon salt
2 table spoon ground almonds
zest of 1 lime
12 table spoon unsalted butter (3/4 cup)
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 cup granulated sugar
3 whole eggs
3 egg yolk
ingredients

***

1. Pre-heat the oven to 350F.
In a food processor, combine the flour, icing sugar and salt. Add 6 table spoon of butter, cut into chunks.
pulse1

2. Add the lime zest and ground almonds and barely mix to combine.
pulse2

3. Press at the bottom of a square, greased, baking dish.
press

4. Bake for 20-25 minutes until firm to the touch and slightly golden. Allow to cool. Lower the oven to 325F.
baked-crust

5. In a large heat proof bowl combine the eggs, egg yolks, granulated sugar and lemon juice.
eggs1

6. Whip until the sugar dissolves and put over a double boiler. Insert a thermometer, making sure the probe is not touching the bottom nor the sides.
eggs2

7. Add the remaining butter. Mix with a wooden spoon as the butter melts to create an emulsion. You don’t want to stop mixing at any point really, to avoid lemony scrambled eggs. Bring to 160F. The mix will thicken so that it may coat the back of the spoon.
eggs3

8. At that point remove from heat. If you want to be sure of the texture, run trough a sieve to remove any lumps.
eggs4

9. Pour unto the crust and bake for 13-15 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a rack for 20-30 minutes. Then cover and cool in the refrigerator for 3 hours or more.
filling-baked

10. Cut into squares and enjoy.
cut1

Advertisements

Dark Chocolate Pie

Warning : cut into small slices and plan to share. This is very, very good and you probably shouldn’t have a whole, or a half a pie to yourself.

Ingredients :
For the Crust :
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup almond flour
3/4 cup icing sugar
zest of 1 lemon
1/2 tea spoon vanilla caviar (or one vanille bean, scraped)
1 egg
1 egg yolk
2/3 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
pinch of salt

For the filling :
260g good dark chocolate
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup whole milk
1 egg
ingredients

***

1. Combine the flour, almond flour and salt.
dry

2. In the bowl of a mixer, combine the butter, icing sugar, lemon zest and vanilla.
butter

3.Cream for a few minutes, until smooth.
butter2

4. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the dry ingredients and the eggs.
dry2

5. Stir on low until it comes together as a dough.
combine

6. Gather into a ball and wrap in plastic. Chill for a minimum of 3 hours.
ball

7. Pre-heat the oven to 350F.
Roll out the dough on a floured surface to about 1/4 inch thick.
crustroll

8. Cut a circle of parchment paper that is the same size as the bottom of your tart dish. Set it aside for now.
parchment

9. Carefully drape the dough into the tart dish. Gently fold and push it down into all the creases.
crustfold

10. Then using your rolling pin, gently roll over the rim of the dish to cut the dough.
crustcut

11. Remove the excess dough. You can recombine it to use later.
crusttrimmed

12. Attack the bottom of the dough with a fork and mark it all over.
crustfork

13. Then cover with that parchment paper from earlier.
parchment2

14. And add pie weights. I know, I need to get more. You can also use dry beans (just don’t try to cook them later).
weights

15. Put in the oven for 20 minutes or until lightly golden. You don’t want this to be dark.
Then remove from the oven, remove the pie weights and parchment paper and allow to cool.
bakedcrust

16. While that is cooling, Combine the heavy cream and whole milk in a pot.
Bring to a boil.
cream

17. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate. Wait 30 seconds then whip until smooth. Add in the egg, while whipping to incorporate. Don’t stop whipping or you’ll have bits of scrambled egg in your ganache. The picture is just the cream over the dark chocolate. I was running out of hands to take a picture of the whipping process.
pour

18. Pour into the cooked crust. Gently jiggle to spread around.
Lower the oven to 345F. Bake for 10-15 minutes
ganache

19. Allow to cool on a wire rack for 1 hour. The edges should be set but the middle should still have a slight jiggle to it when you take it out of the oven.
cooked

20. When the pie has cooled, -gently- remove the bottom from the side, then slide the pie off the bottom of the pan.
unmold

21. Slice, serve with fresh berries and some coulis of your choice and enjoy!
slice

Thumbprint Cookies

I made these with the Boozy Strawberry Jam I made last summer. The saltiness of the shortbread is offset very nicely by the sweetness of the jam. A nice little taste of summer berries in the cold, grey and snowy winter.

Ingredients :
2 sticks butter, room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
2 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
jam
ingredients

****

1. Pre-heat the oven to 375F.
Cut the butter into chunks and put in the bowl of a mixer with the sugar.
butter-and-sugar

2. Beat the sugar and butter until light and fluffy.
beatsugar

3. Add the yolks and the vanilla extract.
liquids

4. Beat until fully incorporated.
beatall

5. Add the flour and salt.
dryingredients

6. Stir together until the dough forms a ball.
dough

7. Remove from the mixer and stick the dough in the fridge for a few minutes. This will help form the cookies and prevent them from spreading too much. Line a baking tray with parchment paper. Form balls of dough about 1 inch in diameter and space them on the sheet. Gently flatten with the palm of your hand.
balls

8. With the handle of a wooden spoon, make a hole in each ball, just be careful not to go straight trough. Then use a 1/4 tea spoon measuring spoon and gently widen the well in the dough.
You can also use your finger or a thimble for this.
wells

9 .Bake for 8 minutes then remove from the oven. If the wells have puffed up, just press them down again. Spoon in the jam.

Then put back in the oven for 4 minutes, until the edges of the cookie are firm and the bottom golden brown.
1bake

10. Carefully transfer to a cooling rack. They will be very soft at this point. Allow to cool fully.
cooling