Sunday, May 1, 2011

Lemon Bar Trifle & Recipe for a Perfect Birthday

Let us consider the ingredients of a perfect birthday celebration for one's spouse.

Step one: If your spouse can't get enough Mexican food, find a fantastic taco stand and take them there for lunch.
Squeeze the lime over the meat, then devour the freshly made tacos with relish.
Step two: Take your spouse somewhere exciting and exotic for dinner. Maybe eat some tapas and the best salad you ever had (dates in my salad? A wonderful idea! Who knew?) and pretend that you are on the streets of Barcelona together.
Step three: A wonderful dessert is requisite, and if your spouse loves lemon, how about a Lemon Bar Trifle with fresh lemon curd, pecan shortbread crumbs and white creaminess?

Step 4: When the whole family gets together to celebrate, make sure there are at least 3 kinds of pies to satisfy all appetites. The smile on your spouse's face will be all the reward you need.

There's the recipe I used for a happy birthday this time around. It was a winner. So was the Lemon Bar Trifle recipe, so here it is:

Lemon Bar Trifle

2 c. flour
1 c. pecans, chopped
1 c. butter, melted
1 1/2 c. sugar
1/4 c. cornstarch
1/4 c. flour
1 3/4 c. cold water
3 egg yolks, beaten
2/3 c. lemon juice
2 T. butter
4 tsp. lemon peel, grated
1 8-oz cream cheese, softened
3 C. powdered sugar
1 8-oz. container frozen whipped topping, thawed

In a small bowl, combine flour and pecans; stir in melted butter. Press into an ungreased 9x13 inch baking dish. Bake at 350 for 18-20 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.

In a small heavy saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch, and flour. Stir in water until smooth. cook and stir over medium-high heat until thickened and bubbly. Reduce heat; cook and stir 2 minutes longer. Remove from heat. Stir a small amount of hot mixture into egg yolks; return all egg yolks to the pan, stirring constantly. Bring to a gentle boil; cook and stir 2 minutes longer. Remove from the heat. Gently stir in the lemon juice, butter, and lemon peel. transfer to a large bowl. Cool to room temperature without stirring. Cover surface with waxed paper; refrigerate until chilled.

In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and powdered sugar until smooth. Fold in whipped topping. Crumble the baked pecan mixture; set aside 1/2 c. for topping. Just before serving, in a 3-quart trifle bowl, layer 1 C. each pecan mixture, lemon mixture, and cream cheese mixture. Repeat layers 2 more times. Sprinkle with reserved pecan mixture. Refrigerate leftovers. Makes 9 servings.

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