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Christmas Citrus Squares

Blood orange lends these biscuits a festive colour palette.

  • Preparation Time20 mins
  • Cooking Time30 mins
  • DifficultyMedium

For the crust

210g plain flour
3 tbsp cornflour
1/4 tsp fine salt
165g unsalted butter, softened
150g sugar
6 tbsp red currant jelly

For the filling

2 large egg yolks
2 large eggs
110g sugar
125ml sweetened condensed milk
50g plain flour
For the crust:

1) Butter a 23 by 31-cm baking pan. Line pan with foil and leave 5-cm extra on all sides. Butter the foil.

2) Whisk the flour, cornflour, and salt together in a bowl.

3) In a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or with a hand mixer, beat the butter with the sugar on medium, until light and fluffy, about four minutes. Turn mixer to low speed, add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Do not over work the dough.

4) Transfer dough to prepared pan, spreading it out evenly across the pan and pressing to make a 1/2-cm thick covering over the bottom of the pan. Cover with plastic wrap, then press and flatten using your hands over the top to smooth and even out the dough. Refrigerate for one hour.

5) Preheat oven to 170°C / gas mark 3.

6) Remove the plastic from the top of the dough and prick the dough with a fork or a wooden skewer. Bake the crust until just golden, about 30 minutes.

For the filling:

1) Meanwhile, melt the jelly in the microwave until soft enough to spread, about one minute. Spread the jelly with a pastry brush or an offset spatula over the crust. Return to the oven and cook another ten minutes. Cool crust completely on a wire rack, one hour.

2) Meanwhile, whisk the eggs, yolks, sugar, sweetened condensed milk, flour, and salt together in a medium bowl. Beat until thick and slightly pale. Stir in the citrus juices and zest, and whisk gently to blend well.

3) Pour the filling onto the cooled crust and bake until the filling is firm but still loose and wobbly in the center, about 25 to 30 minutes. Cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Chill in the refrigerator for at least one hour or overnight before cutting.

4) Remove bars from refrigerator and dip the bottom of it in warm water to soften the butter and release the foil from the sides of the pan. Use foil to lift pastry out of the baking pan and transfer to a cutting board. Using a sharp knife or a pizza cutter, cut into about 50 3-cm squares, wiping down the knife with a hot, wet towel between cuts. Top each square with a tiny triangular segment of clementine or blood orange (with the peel on) and serve.

Copyright 2005 Television Food Network, G.P. All rights reserved.

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