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Lemon and spinach bars recipe and Veggie Desserts book review

Lemon and spinach bars

A recipe for delicious lemon and spinach bars and a review of the Veggie Desserts and Cakes recipe book. Vegetables in cakes? Sounds good to me.
Servings 16

Ingredients

For the base

  • 75 g spinach leaves
  • 75 g unsalted butter softened, plus extra for greasing
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 115 g plain flour

For the lemon filling

  • 4 large free-range eggs
  • 200 g granulated sugar
  • 150 ml lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp lemon zest
  • 40 g plain flour
  • 1 tbsp butter

To finish

  • 1 tbsp icing sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/gas mark 4. Grease and line a 20cm square baking tin.
  2. Wilt the spinach in a pan with a small amount of boiling water, then run under cold water to refresh, then squeeze out the moisture. Purée with a hand blender until smooth.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar together with an electric mixer until smooth, but not too fluffy and aerated. Add the spinach purée and beat well. Sift in the flour and mix gently.
  4. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan, spread to the edges and press down firmly with the back of a damp spoon. Be sure that the mixture goes right into all the edges and there aren't any holes. Bake for 25 minutes, or until the edges begin to turn golden.

To make the lemon filling

  1. Meanwhile, in a saucepan, whisk the eggs and sugar until well combined, then add the lemon juice and zest and gently whisk until completely combined. Gradually sift in the flour, whisking gently to combine, and add the butter. Heat the mixture, stirring constantly, until thick and the butter has melted.
  2. Spoon the mixture over the warm crust, spread evenly to the edges and bake for 25 minutes, or until the edges begin to turn golden. The filling will firm up as it cools. Leave to cool completely in the pan, then dust with the icing sugar and cut into squares to serve.