Light and lemony – great for the warm air of spring

Lemon is the base of the following recipes; each of them is delicious in its own special way.

Lemon bars 311 (photo credit: whatscookingamerica.net)
Lemon bars 311
(photo credit: whatscookingamerica.net)
Lemon Bars
If you are of the “eat dessert first” mindset…the recipes for lemon bars are endless with minimal variations. The unifying factor is that they also taste so good.
For crust:
-2 cups flour
-¼ cup sugar
-1 cup (2 sticks) margarine
For filling:
-2 cups sugar
-1 teaspoon baking powder
-4 tablespoons flour
-3 eggs, lightly beaten
-½ cup lemon juice
-½ teaspoon grated lemon rind
-Powdered sugar to sprinkle on top
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Blend together flour, sugar and margarine and pat into bottom of a greased 10 x 15-inch (jellyroll) pan. 
Bake for about 15 minutes. Remove to wire rack. 
Beat together filling ingredients in the order given. Pour over crust and bake for 15 to 20 minutes – until set. 
Cool, cut into squares and sprinkle with powdered sugar. 
Lemon Stir-Fry Chicken
Lemon chicken-¼ cup soy sauce
-½ cup water
-2 tablespoons corn starch
-1 cup lemon juice (fresh is always better but you can use bottled if necessary)
-¼ cup sugar
-3 tablespoons peanut oil
-1 teaspoon minced garlic
-2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into strips
-2 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced on the diagonal
-½ cup snow peas
-1 (4 ounce) can sliced water chestnuts, drained
-2 scallions, minced
Whisk together soy sauce, water, cornstarch, lemon juice and sugar; set aside. 
Heat oil in a work or large skillet over medium-high heat and sauté garlic for 1 minute. 
Add chicken and sauté until no longer pink – 5 to 8 minutes. 
Add carrots, snow peas and water chestnuts and continue to sauté until tender – about another 5 minutes. 
Stir in sauce and scallions and cook until sauce begins to bubble.  Serve over rice.
Lemony Couscous and Cashew Salad
-2/3 cup olive oil
-3 tablespoons lemon juice
-1 teaspoon minced garlic
-½ teaspoon chili pepper flakes
-½ teaspoon salt
-½ teaspoon sugar
-½ teaspoon pepper
-4 cups cooked couscous (about 1 box)
-2 cups roasted cashews
-4 scallions, chopped
Whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, chili pepper flakes, salt, sugar and pepper.  Pour over couscous and mix well.  Top with cashews and scallions. 
Variations:  Almost any vegetable can be added to this salad – peppers, tomatoes, cooked sweet potatoes, baby corn, snow peas, bamboo shoots.
For more great kosher recipes go to: www.gourmetkoshercooking.com