Recipe: Tangy lemon squares – The Cookbook Challenge Week 30 ‘Baked’ theme

by April@MyFoodTrail on September 13, 2010

in Baking, Cookbook Challenge 2010, Recipes, Slices

Theme: Baked
Cookbook: The Country Table by The Australian Women’s Weekly

I can’t believe there are less than two months left in the Cookbook Challenge! I’m so disappointed I’ve gotten so far behind and it’s so hard finding the time to catch up but I’ll keep believing I’ll eventually get there!

There were so many things I could have made for baked week, probably more than any other week in the Cookbook Challenge. I had too many choices, but I picked this week’s recipe based on using up ingredients rather than anything else. I was given a whole lot of lemons from someone at work which needed to be used up.

I have my own lemon tree in my backyard, but sadly it hasn’t produced any fruit since it was heavily pruned back about a year ago due to a bad gall wasp infection. My lemon tree is looking healthier now and has lots of leaves so hopefully next year I’ll have my own lemons and be giving them away instead of finding someone to give some to me!

Hubby’s not a fan of sour flavours so when my work was having a morning tea, I volunteered to bring in some baked goodies and make something with lemons. I found this recipe for tangy lemon squares (or slice) and thought it would make a nice change from a cake.

These tangy lemon squares are pretty easy to make. It’s made up of a pastry base which is covered with a lemon mixture similar to a lemon curd. The pastry base was a bit difficult to work with to get flat on the base of the pan but came good in the oven once baked.

Tangy lemon squares

Tangy lemon squares - Finished

125g butter, softened
¼ cup (40g) icing sugar, sifted
1 cup (150g) plain flour, sifted
3 eggs
1 cup (220g) caster sugar
¼ cup (35g) plain flour, sifted, extra
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon rind
½ cup (125ml) lemon juice

Preheat oven to 180C (160C fan forced). Grease and line a shallow 23cm square pan with a baking paper.

2. Beat butter and icing sugar together with an electric mixer until light and fluffy.

3. With a spatula, stir in 1 cup of plain flour. Mixture will look like coarse breadcrumbs/scrambled eggs.

Tangy lemon squares - Method 1

Left: Mixing in flour; Right: Pressed mixture into the base of the pan

4. Press mixture evenly over base of pan.

5. Bake base for 15 minutes or until browned lightly.

Tangy lemon squares - Method 2

Left: Baked base out of the oven; Right: Lemon mixture poured over the hot base

6. Meanwhile, whisk eggs, caster sugar, the other ¼ cup of plain flour, lemon rind and lemon juice in a bowl until combined.

7. When base has finished baking, remove from oven and pour egg mixture over hot base.

8. Bake slice 20 minutes or until firm. Cool in pan before cutting. Dust with extra sifted icing sugar if desired.

Tangy lemon squares - Method 3

Left: Tangy lemon slice out of the oven; Right: The very thin slice

Results: The slice came out very thin, but each square definitely packed a lemon punch! There was a distinct sourness in the first bite, followed by the sweetness from the sugar. I liked the pastry, biscuit like base together with the lemon filling. Everyone at work really enjoyed them with several people asking for the recipe! I made them a second time the next week, but probably got too much of the white part of the lemon rind in my zest because the slice turned out too bitter.

Would I make it again? Yes, I already have, but I’d like to try it with oranges instead of lemons.

Over & Out, April xx

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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

penny aka jeroxie September 13, 2010 at 2:39 pm

I have so many lemons! I can do this…


Hannah September 13, 2010 at 2:57 pm

Oh gosh, can I have your husband's slices? I adore tangy lemon desserts… in fact, can I have the whole batch? 😉


mademoiselle délicieuse September 13, 2010 at 6:35 pm

Think I'd like a lemon-lime version – I love tangy tart stuff!


Agnes September 13, 2010 at 9:18 pm

Yes, you can do it! You can catch up! 😀 The lemon slices look great, April!


almostalwaysravenous September 13, 2010 at 10:42 pm

how sour is this lemon punch? LOLz, i'm afraid i might cringe… =P
ooo look forward to the orange version!


Conor @ Hold the Beef September 14, 2010 at 2:14 pm

Anything with tangy in the title has got to be good. Unless it's a misnomer, then it would be horribly disappointing. More bitterly disappointing that a mouthful of pith. These look like anti-disappointment. I wonder if I can get a job at your work one day.


Gourmet Getaway September 18, 2010 at 6:46 pm

I love lemon in anything but particularly desserts
I had have been thinking of adding a few citrus trees, mainly lemon and lime


Kat (Spatula, Spoon and Saturday) September 18, 2010 at 9:42 pm

Were these the ones that you gave me a slice of? Cos that was absolutely rocking and I would totally try to make it.


April @ My Food Trail September 21, 2010 at 11:46 am

Hi Penny: Yes you can! It's an easy recipe!

Hi Hannah: If you come down to Melbourne and it's lemon season, I'll bake you a whole batch!

Hi mademoiselle délicieuse: Ooh, a lemon lime version does sound good!

Hi Agnes: Thanks for the encouragement! I fear I have dropped too far behind to catch up before the end, but I'm still holding on to hope! hehe!

Hi almostalwaysravenous: It's not sour enough to really make you cringe because of the sugar in it, but it is quite tart!

Hi Conor: They were anti disappointment and you are welcome to try out my baked goodies any time! I'll remember to save you a virtual piece next time!

Hi Gourmet Getaway: If you have the room in your yard, definitely add some trees!

Hi Kat: Yes, they are the ones!!


Emma @CakeMistress September 23, 2010 at 2:33 pm

I love anything lemon-y. Sad that I'm separated from the lemon tree back at home, but i'm sure I can muster up a few to make these good-looking squares.


April @ My Food Trail September 24, 2010 at 5:28 pm

Hi Emma: Aw, you'll just have to find a friend with a lemon tree here! 🙂 The squares are worth making if you like your lemons!


Helen barlow November 23, 2014 at 12:42 pm

i made this tangy lemon slice for an afternoon,tea and it was such a hit! Thankyou. Is it suitable to freeze?


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