My moderate success making semolina pudding with a ginger vodka sauce inspired me to continue my forays into baking with booze. In this edition, I used my old friend, tequila, to make what I hoped would be sort of like a coconut margarita in baked good form. Although there are plenty of recipes that incorporate mezcal into desserts, like cupcakes, I wanted something lighter, tarter in flavor yet creamy in texture.
The citrus fruit usually paired with tequila in bar recipes is, of course, lime, in a nod to the traditional margarita, but I was feeling like something sunnier and sweeter. Using this terrific recipe as a guide, I made some alterations to produce some very lemony, very coconutty tequila bars. The recipe:
Tequila Coconut Lemon Bars
- 2 cups flour
- 2 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, chilled
- 4 eggs
- 2 cups chopped toasted coconut flakes
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 3 Tablespoons tequila (I used leftover Hornitos)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
For once I actually let my baked goods cool before sampling them (the ambient heat must be ruining my taste for hot sweets). The bars were cool with a light sweetness, though not tart enough for my liking so next time I might increase the lemon juice and ease up on the coconut. And while you could never get drunk on these bars, I swear I got the slightest buzz after three samples. Or maybe that was just the power of suggestion.
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