I've been hoping all week that the weather reports were an early April Fools joke, and we weren't really going to get a foot of snow on the first day of April. Sadly, the reports were correct, and we did indeed get a thick layer of new snow to cover up the grass that had finally begun to show again. I have been ready for spring since November, and this latest storm was most unwelcome. Fortunately, the ground had already begun to thaw before the snow fell, so it won't stick around too long, but it's still demoralizing to see this weather when I'm ready to pull out my summery dresses and sandals.
But when life gives you lemons (or in this case a snowstorm and yet another snow day for the kids), you make lemonade, right? Actually, lemon squares. I'm not sure where the recipe is from, it's written on an index card in my recipe box, but it makes for a delicious, tart lemon treat.
2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1/2 cup confectioners sugar (plus more for dusting)
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
6 large eggs
3 cups granulated sugar
Grated zest of 3 lemons
1 cup plus 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 7 lemons)
1. Heat oven to 325ºF. In a medium bowl, combine 1 1/2 cups flour and confectioners sugar. Using a pastry cutter, cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse meal. Gently pat into a 9-by-13" glass baking dish, and bake until crust is golden brown, about 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer to wire rack to cool.
2. Reduce oven to 300ºF. Whisk together eggs, flour and granulated sugar in a medium bowl. Add lemon zest and juice, and combine. Pour filling onto baked crust, and bake until filling sets, about 40 minutes. Refrigerate until well chilled before slicing, 1 hour and preferably overnight. Dust with confectioners sugar, slice into pieces with a sharp knife, and serve.
Since there were two rather impatient children waiting anxiously for the lemon squares to finish, I didn't follow the advice to chill the squares. I made a batch this past weekend that had been chilled overnight before serving, and while it looks prettier when the squares are cut, I think they taste better when slightly warm.