Pecan Quads

We pedants do not call these squares, because they are not.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

The Crust:

In the bowl of a food processor (with metal blade in place) grate the peel of one (Meyer?) lemon.
Add to bowl
   1/2 pound unsalted butter, in 1/2 inch cubes.
Cream, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary.
Add
   1/4 cup white sugar
   1/4 cup light brown sugar.
Process until sugar in incorporated into butter. Add
   1 egg
   1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
   1 Tablespoon limoncello liqueur (optional)
   2 pinches salt.
Process until smooth. Add
   2 cups unbleached white flour
   1 cup whole almonds.
Process just until flour is incorporated.

Smear a 9 by 13 inch baking dish with margarine and line with parchment. Press dough to line the bottom of the pan. Place in bottom third of oven and bake for 30 minutes, or until lightly browned, reversing the pan front to back midway to ensure even baking.

The Filling:

In a large pot over moderate heat, melt
   1/2 pound butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
in
   1 cup whipping cream.
Add
   2 cups brown sugar.
Stir until the sugar is dissolved. Allow to boil gently for about eight minutes. Remove from heat. Add
   5 cups chopped or halved pecans.
Allow to sit five minutes. Add and stir
   1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
   1 Tablespoon scotch.

The Final Product:

When the crust is done, with a slotted spoon, arrange the pecans evenly over the crust.  Pour the remaining liquid evenly over the nuts, smoothing with a spatula.  Return to the oven for 20-25 minutes.  The topping should be bubbling.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before trying to cut.

Invert the pan over a board, urging the slab out of the pan.  Peel off the parchment.  Place a cutting board on top of the slab and invert the two boards together quickly.  The nut layer should now be on top.  With a serrated knife, cut into eight by eight rectangular pieces.  Makes 64 quads.

© 2003 Richard Waldinger