How to get ahead in business. Hint: It’s with snacks!

Turns out, office morning teas are absolutely nothing like high tea with Queen Victoria.

When I first started out in the working world and received an invitation to my first morning tea, I was delighted. I had images of little sandwiches, petite fours and quiche, with witty conversation over cups of tea.

Erm… That was not the case. At all.

The reality was very different. People were snatching tidbits from platters before I’d had the chance to put them down, spilling coffee, and quickly retreating back to their desks. Don’t even get me started on the absence of quiche…

My current workplace however, is much better, and we love any excuse to get together and have a chat over snacks.

Its also a great test environment for whatever baking challenge I’ve set for myself, because as far as the work crew are concerned, hey, free treats! Everybody wins, huzzah!

These are perfect for morning teas or bake sales, as it’s not too tricky, doesn’t need complicated ingredients and appeals to just about everyone.
The original recipe calls for blackberries, however they are sometimes hard to come by in Perth, so I swapped them for blueberries.
The end result was a gorgeous crumble on top, and the filling was almost like custard, and with a lemony tang that wasn’t overpowering.

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Blueberry & Lemon Pie Bars

adapted from Pink Parsley

Crust and Topping

  • 3 cups plain flour
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups (around 340g) unsalted butter, chilled

Fruit Filling

  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • pinch salt
  • zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 400g frozen blueberries, thawed and drained

To make the crust and topping, preheat the oven to 180 degrees.  Grease a 9×13 inch baking pan.

Combine the flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor.  Pulse a few times to mix.  Cut the butter into little bits, and add to the flour mixture.  Process until the butter is evenly distributed but the mixture is still crumbly, 30-60 seconds. You can also smush it with your hands, which I did, just make sure it’s well combined.

Base & Crumble

Reserve 1 1/2 cups of the mixture to use as the topping.  Press the remaining mixture into the bottom of the pan, and bake 12-15 minutes.  Cool for at least 10 minutes.

To make the filling, whisk the eggs in a large bowl, then add the sugar, sour cream, flour, salt, lemon zest, and vanilla extract.  Gently fold in the berries and spoon the mixture over the crust.  Sprinkle the remaining flour mixture evenly over the filling, and bake 45 to 55 minutes.

In stupid tiny pan

Cool for at least 1 hour before cutting into bars.

Delicious.

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At the moment, I’ve only got one baking pan (note to self: buy another), and it’s smaller than the one used in the recipe. When mine all came together, the pan was very, very full. Ooopsies. I put it in the oven, and hoped for the best. It needed more cooking than called for, but I think that was just me and my stupid tiny pan.
My guinea pigs housemates, weren’t home while I was cutting it up, so it went into the office un-pre-taste tested, which made me really nervous. Luckily, it was a winner (thanks Kate and Tracey for the love), so as spring rolls on, I’ll certainly make it again. Possibly with mixed berries. Definitely with a bigger pan.


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