Spirited Sweets: Tequila Coconut Lemon Bars
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.
Photo by Joanna O'Leary Tequila Coconut Lemon Bars
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.