Lemon Tarts in Graham Cracker Cups
Debbie, one of Inspiration Bakery and Mixes founders, has a special love and flair for desserts. That means, you lucky baker, that she presents you this Lemon Tarts in Graham Cracker Cups recipe for a fun, if a little challenging, baking time. She uses your Inspiration Bakery and Mixes Versatile Cookie Mix to make the graham-cracker-crust cups. We use that mix to make chocolate chip and oatmeal cookies for friends and family. She tells you how to make the lemon tart filling from scratch; when you're done making it, you'll find it's more like a lemon meringue pie but realize it was much easier to make. Always Gluten-Free!
- Stove with Oven
- Dry Measuring Cups and Spoons
- Liquid Measuring Cup
- Stand Mixer or Hand Mixer (with Mixing Bowl)
- Cookie Sheet or Baking Pan
- Parchment Paper
- Blender (or Rolling Pin and Plastic Bag)
- 6 One-Cup Bowls or Ramekins
- Bowls (2)
- Wire Whisk
- Sauce Pans (2)
- Small Cookie Sheet or Baking Pan
- Plastic Cling Wrap
Graham Cracker Crust
- 1 Box Inspiration Bakery and Mixes Versatile Cookie Mix
- 1 1/2 Cups Butter or Margarine (softened)
- 3/4 Cup Brown Sugar (packed)
- 1/2 Cup Granulated Sugar
- 1 Tablespoon Vanilla Extract
- 2 Eggs (whole)
- 1/2 Cup Granulated Sugar
- 6 Tablespoons Cornstarch
- 2 Lemons (fresh, whole, 1 grated)
- 1/2 Cup Water (cold)
- 3 Egg Yolks (well beaten)
- 2 Tablespoons Butter or Margarine
- 1 1/2 Cups Water (boiling)
- 2 Teaspoons Lemon Peel (grated)
- 1 1/2 Cup Whipped Cream or Dairy Free Substitute
- 1 1/2 Cup Berries
Prepare Graham Cracker Crust
- Pre-heat oven to 375° F.
- Put your wet ingredients, except for the eggs, in your stand mixer bowl or, if using a hand mixer, into a medium-sized bowl. Blend your wet ingredients on medium-low for approximately one minute. Add both eggs and blend on medium-low till creamy, also about one minute.
- Add your Versatile Cookie Mix and, after stirring a time or two with a spoon, blend the cookie mix into the wet ingredients on medium-low. Don’t overbeat or the batter will get too fluffy.
- Use 1/4 of the mix to spread onto a parchment-paper-lined cookie or baking pan. Using a knife spread out as evenly as possible, about 1/4 inch thick, but not to the edges. The dough will spread as its being cooked.Use the rest of the cookie dough to make cookies, or store it in the freezer for later use.
- Bake 20-25 minutes until your cookie mixture is somewhat dry. Oven temperatures will vary, so check the progress after 15 minutes. Remove from oven and completely cool. This will take around 15-20 minutes.
- Use a blender to grind the cookie to a crumbly graham cracker consistency. If you don’t have a blender you can use a large plastic bag and a rolling pin. Break up the cookie and place it inside the plastic bag. Then simply roll over the outside of the bag until you get your consistency.
Prepare the Graham Cracker Cups
- In a bowl, add 1 cup of the crumbled graham crackers and 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar mixing well with a whisk or spoon.
- Melt 3 tablespoons of butter or margarine in a pan or microwave and add to the bowl stirring with a fork to completely incorporate the butter or margarine into the dry mixture.
- Divide the mixture into your 6 one-cup bowls or ramekins. Then with a fork, spread the mixture from the bottoms then up the sides of the bowls or ramekins. The mixture will not cover the sides completely but will serve as a light graham-cracker crust under the filling. Be sure the bottoms remain covered, too.
- Any leftover graham cracker crumbs can be saved for several weeks in a plastic bag or air-tight container for a couple of weeks. You can also freeze the leftovers for up to a month. If using your freezer for storage, be sure to remove the crumbs and place them on parchment paper to dry out for about 30 minutes before using them in a recipe.
Prepare the Lemon Filling
- Grate the surface of one of your fresh lemons to make 2 teaspoons of grated peel. Then, into a liquid measuring cup squeeze the fresh lemons to make 1/2 cup of juice. Then put 1/2 cup cold water into the liquid measuring cup.
- In a medium saucepan, combine granulated sugar and cornstarch together with a wire whisk. Gradually blending 1/2 cup cold water and lemon juice with a wire whisk. Place saucepan over medium-low heat, and whisk until smooth. This happens very quickly while the pan is heating.
- In another saucepan, begin to boil 1 1/2 cups of water.
- Add the egg yolks and 2 tablespoons of butter or margarine to the lemon mixture and blend thoroughly. Stir constantly with a wire whisk till the butter or margarine is melted, about 1 minute or so.
- As soon as the water has boiled, add to the lemon mixture and continue stirring until mixture reaches desired thickness, about 2 to 3 minutes. The boiling water will react dramatically to thicken the mixture quickly. Be sure to continue to stir it until it calms down. You may need to remove it from the stove so it isn’t too thick.
- Remove the lemon mixture from the heat, and stir in the grated lemon peel.
- While warm, evenly fill each graham-cracker-crust cup with the lemon mixture. Cool about 5-10 minutes. Place your Lemon Tarts on a small cookie sheet and or other baking pan and cover with plastic cling wrap, then put them in your refrigerator. Once covered and refrigerated, your Lemon Tarts will be good for a week.
- Once you are ready to serve your Lemon Tarts, you can serve them plain, top them with whipped cream or a dairy-free substitute, or cover them with a tablespoon of your favorite berries.