When I was growing up, our house was just a short walk to a nice little bakery, that made everything from bread to birthday cakes. Being so close, my Mom and I visited them frequently. We must have tried everything they made, brownies, Nanaimo Bars, sugar cookies, cakes… You can see where my obsession with dessert originated… As my tastebuds matured, and I learned that there was more to life than chocolate *GASP* (shocking, I know), I discovered and fell in love with their lemon bars. A thin shortbread crust, topped with a lemony filling and sprinkled coconut.
The fresh citrusy flavour of lemon bars has remained in my culinary heart ever since, even though I’ve long shunned them as being non-vegan. That is until today… I’ve missed you Lemon Bars! 🙂
1/4 cup Shortening
1/4 cup Margarine
1/4 cup Granulated Sugar
1 cup All-Purpose Flour
1/2 cup Soft Tofu
1 cup Granulated Sugar
1/3 cup Lemon Juice
2 tbsp Arrowroot Flour
1/4 tsp Lemon Extract
1/2 cup Coconut, shredded unsweetened
Preheat oven to 350°F and prepare an 8 x 8 inch baking pan.
Blend the shortening and margarine. Add 1/4 cup sugar and cream until light. Add the flour and blend until mixture just comes together. Press dough evenly into prepared pan and bake for 20 minutes (until lightly browned). Set pan on wire rack, allowing base to cool slightly while you prepare the filling.
In a blender or food processor, puree the tofu. Add 1 cup sugar and blend until thoroughly combined. Blend in the lemon juice, arrowroot flour, and lemon extract (filling will be very liquidly). Pour the filling over the baked base and bake for 15 minutes.
Carefully remove pan from oven (filling will still be partially liquidly) and sprinkle coconut over top. Return to oven and bake for an additional 5 – 10 minutes, until filling has set. Set filling will still be quite jiggly, like a loose pudding, but will firm up as it cools.
Allow to cool completely in the pan before slicing into bars.
Makes 12 – 16 bars.