Always a staple for bridal showers, teas or picnics, I’ve been making these lemon squares since the 80’s with perfect results each time. I’m not sure where this recipe came from; it is one of those that is passed around for generations. I think I got it from my friend Cathy Wheeler and she got it from her mother-in-law Betty. Betty Wheeler was the most amazing cake baker. I sure wish I had all of her recipes.
TRADITIONAL SOUTHERN LEMON SQUARES
Prep Time: 20 minutes Cook Time: 50 minutes
2 cups plus 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup Confectioner’s sugar
1 cup cold butter, diced
4 large eggs
2 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
Preheat oven to 350°. Line bottom and sides of a 13- x 9-inch pan with parchment paper, allowing 2 to 3 inches to extend over sides; lightly grease paper. Use clothes pins to secure the paper.
Stir together 2 cups flour and 1/2 cup powdered sugar. Cut in butter using a pastry blender or fork until crumbly. Press mixture onto bottom of prepared pan. Bake at 350° for 20 to 25 minutes or it is light golden brown. Place on a rack while you make the filling.
Whisk the eggs in a large bowl until smooth. Next, whisk in granulated sugar, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Stir together baking powder and remaining 1/4 cup flour and whisk into the egg mixture. Pour mixture over the hot baked crust.
Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until filling is set. Let cool in pan on a wire rack 30 minutes. Lift from pan, using the paper as handles. Cool completely on a wire rack for at least 30 minutes. Cut into bars; sprinkle with powdered sugar. For a tea, cut the bars into small squares.