Limoncello Shortbread Squares


In the past couple years, I’ve been on a mission to figure out how to “veganize” my old-time favorite comfort foods and desserts. Not only that, but I didn’t want to make them “just as good as,” I wanted to make them better, in hopes to dismiss the common myth that when “veganizing” a food it inherently means that the outcome is inferior to the original. I’ll get off my soap box now and explain how to make my new all time favorite lemon shortbread squares with a twist: Limoncello Shortbread Squares!

Shortbread Base Ingredients:

1/2 cup organic slivered almonds (I buy raw almonds from the bulk section and chop them myself for a thrifty version)
1/2 cup organic 100% whole wheat flour (I use Bob’s Red Mill)
1/4 cup organic powdered sugar (I use Whole Foods Brand 365, also cheaper)
1/2 tsp salt (no such thing as true organic salt)
4 TBSP Earth Balance Natural Buttery Spread (it’s vegan)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Starting with the almonds, food process until sandy, about 30 seconds. Continue adding each of the above ingredients processing about 15 seconds between adding the next. Once it is all blended together in a nice sandy texture, press firmly into an 8×8 or 9×11 greased (with Earth Balance) glass baking dish. Size depends on if you want them thin or thick. Bake 22 minutes. While this is baking begin preparing the filling:

Filling Ingredients:

1/2 cup vegan sugar (I use Whole Foods 365 brand)
1 TBSP+ 1/2 tsp powdered or granulated Stevia (I use NuNaturals brand)
1/2 cup unbleached organic flour
3 TBSP organic soy flour (I use Bob’s Red Mill brand)
1/4 tsp salt
3 tsp vegan egg replacer (I love Ener-G brand), mix with 4 TBSP warm water
1 tsp orange oil or zest of 1 orange
1 lemon juiced
5 TBSP organic Limoncello (store-bought or homemade: recipe provided in post above)

Combine all ingredients into medium bowl and whisk until smooth. It should have a gooeyness and slightly thick consistency. Once shortbread crust is out of the oven, pour this mixture on top and spread evenly. Bake for 30 minutes, then let cool completely before eating. You can keep it out if covered or in the refrigerator.


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