CRANBERRY SQUARES WITH WALNUT SHORTBREAD

 

October 4, 2016

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The tart cranberry curd pairs refreshingly with walnut shortbread crust. Not fussy to make, Cranberry Squares with Walnut Shortbread Crust sit content in the fridge until showtime. The small red berries bite back, as the creamy walnut shortbread crust melts in your mouth. Cranberries, rumoured to have been served at the first Thanksgiving, still symbolize peace and abundance. Your guests will love this simple unusual dessert. I hope you try them.

This recipe is by Emma Christensen of thekitchn.com. It's expertly written. Take a look at the original post.

The Finer Cookie is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for websites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. This post contains affiliate links, which means The Finer Cookie will receive a small commission if you make a purchase using this link. This modest income helps support the website.

Ingredients

Print Recipe

Grams

Ounces

Volume

FOR THE WALNUT SHORTBREAD CRUST

125 grams walnut pieces
125 grams all-purpose flour
60 grams confectioner sugar, tamped lightly down and levelled off
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
113 grams unsalted butter, softened and cut into pieces

FOR THE CRANBERRY CURD

340 grams fresh or frozen cranberries with 1/2 cup water or 1 liquid cup of unsweetened cranberry juice
99 grams white granulated sugar
4 large eggs
4 large egg yolks
2 tablespoons lemon juice from half of one lemon
1/4 teaspoon fine salt
113 grams unsalted butter, softened cut into tablespoon pieces
powdered sugar for dusting
lemon zest for garnish

FOR THE WALNUT SHORTBREAD CRUST

4.5 ounces walnut pieces
4.4 ounces all-purpose flour
2 ounces confectioner sugar, tamped lightly down and levelled off
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
4 ounces unsalted butter, softened and cut into pieces

FOR THE CRANBERRY CURD

12 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries with 1/2 cup water or 1 liquid cup of unsweetened cranberry juice
3.5 ounces white granulated sugar
4 large eggs
4 large egg yolks
2 tablespoons lemon juice from half of one lemon
1/4 teaspoon fine salt
4 ounces unsalted butter, softened cut into tablespoon pieces
powdered sugar for dusting
lemon zest for garnish

FOR THE WALNUT SHORTBREAD CRUST

1 cup walnut pieces
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup confectioner sugar, tamped lightly down and levelled off
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened and cut into pieces

FOR THE CRANBERRY CURD

3 cups fresh or frozen cranberries with 1/2 cup water or 1 liquid cup of unsweetened cranberry juice
‚Äč½ cup white granulated sugar
4 large eggs
4 large egg yolks
2 tablespoons lemon juice from half of one lemon
1/4 teaspoon fine salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened cut into tablespoon pieces
powdered sugar for dusting
lemon zest for garnish

Instructions

MISE EN PLACE THE SHORTBREAD CRUST

  • Line a 9x13 baking pan with parchment so it extends over the long edge. This will give you something to grab onto when unmoulding the Cranberry Squares. Leave the pan ungreased as it will be easier to remove from the pan.

My prepared pan.
My prepared pan.

  • Weigh or measure your walnuts and place them in the bowl of a food processor and coarsely grind, about 15 one-second pulses. Alternately, finely chop the walnuts by hand. How to Weigh and Measure for more details.
  • Combine flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt in a small bowl and set aside.
  • Measure the butter and set aside.

COMPLETING THE SHORTBREAD CRUST

  • Add the dry ingredients to the ground walnuts and pulse until combined thoroughly.
  • Add the butter to the dry ingredients and pulse just until the mixture holds together, when pressed between your fingers.

Shortbread dough holds together perfectly.
Shortbread dough holds together perfectly.

  • Sprinkle the dough into your baking dish and press evenly over the surface.

Pressing the walnut shortbread into the prepared pan.
Pressing the walnut shortbread into the prepared pan.

  • Press the crust mix into the baking dish, and smooth making it as even as possible.

Smoothing the walnut shortbread into the pan.
Smoothing the walnut shortbread into the pan.

  • Freeze for 30-60 minutes.

BAKING THE SHORTBREAD

  • Preheat the oven to 350F.
  • Remove the crust from the freezer and set it directly in the oven.
  • Bake at 350??F for 20-25 minutes, until beginning to color around the edges.
  • While the crust is baking, prepare the cranberry curd.

MISE EN PLACE THE CRANBERRY CURD

  • Place the cranberries and water in a medium-sized sauce pot over medium-high heat and stir.
  • Continue cooking and stirring occasionally until all the cranberries have popped and become mushy, about 5 minutes.
  • Pour them into a fine-meshed strainer set over a medium-sized mixing bowl and press the cranberry puree through using a spatula
  • Allow the puree to cool to room temperature. Discard the cranberry skins and clean the strainer for use in the next step.
  • Separate the eggs and place in a saucepan. How to Separate Eggs for more details.
  • Measure the sugar and lemon juice in separate bowls and set aside.
  • Measure the butter and set aside.
  • Set out yourinstant thermometer.

COOKING OF THE CRANBERRY CURD

  • To the saucepan, add the cranberry puree or juice, sugar, lemon juice and salt to the eggs.

Start with eggs and sugar for the curd.
Start with eggs and sugar for the curd.

  • Stir thoroughly until the mixture is even.
  • Set the saucepan on the burner to medium.
  • Stir the curd continuously, making sure to scrape the bottom and corners of the pan. Cook until the curd starts to thicken, coats the back of a spatula, and registers about 150F on an instant-read thermometer (no need to be exact here. The curd will finish cooking in the oven). This should take 10-12 minutes.

Stirring the cranberry curd until it thickens.
Stirring the cranberry curd until it thickens.

  • Remove the pan from the heat and add the butter all at once.
  • Stir until the butter has completely melted, then pour the curd through the strainer into a clean bowl or spouted measuring cup.

Pouring the cooked cranberry curd through a strainer.
Pouring the cooked cranberry curd through a strainer.

  • Pour the warm cranberry curd onto the baked walnut crust.

Pouring the cranberry curd into the baked walnut shortbread crust.
Pouring the cranberry curd into the baked walnut shortbread crust.

BAKING THE CRANBERRY CURD AND WALNUT SHORTBREAD

  • Bake at 350??F for 10-15 minutes, until the curd has set but still jiggles slightly in the center.
  • Cool completely, then refrigerate for at least 3 hours.

CUTTING THE SQUARES

  • To cut the squares, lift them from the pan using the parchment paper as handles.
  • Dust powdered sugar over the cranberry curd. The sugar will disappear and will create a shiny glaze without adding too much sweetness.

Dusting powdered sugar onto the cranberry curd.
Dusting powdered sugar onto the cranberry curd.

  • Trim off the sides to make even edges if desired.
  • Use a sharp knife to cut them into squares
  • Serve cold from the fridge.
  • Store in the refrigerator.
TAGS:  cranberry   walnuts   shortbread       LABELS: Citrus  Nut and Seed 

Comments

2 Comments

Marie   2017-01-07

These sound amazing! I love fruit squares and I've somehow never thought of making them with cranberries. I'm grateful for the inspiration and can't wait to give these a taste.

Kimberlie 2017-01-07

I hope you try them soon. You won't be disappointed. Thanks for your comment.

Liz Berg   2017-01-07

Such gorgeous bars and photos! This may be the only way I'll ever get my hubby to eat anything with cranberries :)

Kimberlie 2017-01-07

Hi Liz, I appreciate your nice words about the photos. You can add more sugar if your husband can't tolerate the tartness. Thanks for your comment.

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CRANBERRY SQUARES WITH WALNUT SHORTBREAD

Ingredients
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