Sunday, August 5, 2012

Award- Winning Lemon Squares

No joke, my friends... these really are award-winning. In fact, when I was a mere Brownie Girl Scout, I entered a bake-off with these little gems, and happened to walk out with a blue ribbon! My seven year old self was so thrilled about this triumph, that I swore that I would never forget the recipe that earned me the right to brag to EVERYONE I know for years to come. I'm happy to report that I have yet to let anyone forget that I am a blue-ribbon baker.

So what's so special about this recipe that it deserves its own space on my blog? Well other than the fact that a panel of experienced judges deemed it to be absolutely divine, it does look rather cute when presented on a platter. What else is awesome about this dessert is that it's a no-bake recipe, which I continue to grow increasingly fond of as the seasonal temperatures steadily rise.

Since the onset of summer, I have developed quite an affinity for no-bake desserts. As someone who thoroughly enjoys baking, this comes as a shock to me, too, but who can resist whipping up something amazing without developing massive stains in the axillary region? Certainly not me.

2 1/2 cups Nilla wafer crumbs (this is equal to one box)
1 stick unsalted butter, melted
1 box instant lemon pudding
8 oz cream cheese, brought to room temperature
2 cups whole milk

1. Make Nilla wafer crumbs by placing whole cookies in either a blender or a food processor. Once you have all of your crumbs, pour them into a bowl of melted butter. As previously stated in the "ingredients" section of this recipe, make sure it's unsalted. If you try to be slick and use salted, please don't tell anyone that you got the recipe from my blog.

2. Press crumbs into a 9 x 13 baking pan. If you have the time (and I strongly recommend that you do), put your crumb-filled pan in the fridge for about an hour.

3. In a large bowl, combine the milk, pudding mix, and cream cheese. A word to the wise: Make sure the cream cheese has been brought to room temperature and therefore softened before attempting to blend into the milk and pudding. Otherwise, your mixture will be rather lumpy regardless of how long you used the hand mixer to whip it into shape.

4. After you have used your hand mixer to blend the ingredients, pour over the chilled cookie crumbs. Smooth evenly with a spatula and make a very fancy design, such as the silhouette of an ancient raptor skeleton. If you don't think it's possible to make pudding art, I challenge you to try.

5. Let your masterpiece kick it old school in the fridge for a few hours before serving.

** You could very easily turn this into a pie... just an idea for those of you who think you're above serving rectangles. Pin It

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