Monday, May 10, 2010

Opening the Box…

Alrighty then. It has begun. First recipe to enter in here is my grandmother’s lemon squares. These differ slightly from the typical lemon bars, as they contain ground almonds in the crust, and flaked coconut in the lemon topping. Keeping true to this simple recipe tested me a bit, as I am a butter snob. This recipe calls for (sigh!)… Margarine. I was sorely tempted to stray just a bit and swap this out for butter, but then that would defeat the purpose of this blog, these are her recipes, and she used margarine. In fact I have no memory of her ever using actual butter. It was Imperial Margarine for baking and the tub of Imperial Light for everything else (for its “healthy” properties, of course).

Needless to say, I went to the store and dutifully stocked up on three boxes of Imperial, which at three boxes for $3 is a deal compared to butter. I have basically just traded cholesterol-ridden saturated butter fat (Mmmmm…butter) for my personal favorite – trans fatty acids, which I have made a decided effort to avoid for years. Oh well, in respect for my grandmother I will use margarine in her baking recipes…What is a couple years off my life expectancy anyway. And do you know what it says on the Imperial box? “Great for Baking!” So, there you go!

On to the recipe:

Lemon Squares

Heat oven to 350, 325 for glass pan (8” square pan).


¾ cup sifted flour
1/3 cup powdered sugar (first mess up…I mistook this for regular sugar because she shortened it to “p. sugar” and I am dumb, so we will see what happens in about 15 minutes when the timer goes off)
1/3 cup ground almonds
1 stick margarine, melted

Blend together and press in bottom of pan. Bake 20 minutes.


2 Eggs
1 cup sugar
2 tsp. lemon zest
3 Tbs lemon juice (any lemons, but I used half Meyers lemon juice and half regular lemon juice)
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
¾ cup flaked coconut

Beat everything except coconut three minutes until fluffy and then add in coconut. Pour over hot crust and bake and additional 25 minutes. Cool completely.


Yum! Although quite a pain to get out of the pan (maybe to recipe RIGHT with powdered sugar and spray the pan with Canola cooking spray…Didn’t think you would need it with all of the “margarine”), these squares featured the lemony goodness of traditional lemon bars, but with a great added texture of coconut all toasty on top, which actually lightened the squares up quite a bit. Hit with everyone in the house, and super quick and easy to make. Thanks Grandma! First recipe try a success!

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