Lemon Squares II

Super excited to share that we moved to our house! Sadly we are a long ways from buying, especially in such a high cost of living area like Seattle. But we are excited to upgrade from renting a small apartment to renting a house with a 2 car garage and a backyard!
When B started working part time at his new job, his mother kindly moved in to help watch the baby, so we knew we would need more space. We started looking at rentals in Zillow and came across a great deal for a 4 bedroom house - the rent would actually be a little cheaper considering we don't have to pay for parking anymore ($225 per car at our downtown apartment!). 

While the commute is a lot further for me, since I would be doing a lot of research in the second half of my fellowship training, I could work from home several days a week.
We contacted the owner immediately, rushed over to the first open house day, and within 5 minutes of walking around the house, I told B we should apply for it asap since I know the house would be gone soon at this price (apparently over 100 inquiries were sent). B was more hesitant as the house was quite old and the walls were a sad yellow, but I told him I would be able to decorate it nicely and it had a lot of potential.

Thankfully the owner decided to accept us since we agreed to a multiyear lease. He cancelled the next day's open house (which was supposed to have 30-50 more people visiting!), and we started the housing rental process immediately.
I convinced B we should paint the interior all white to brighten up the home (the owner gave permission), and while it was a ton of work doing it ourself, we saved a lot of money. Our friends kindly helped paint the walls as well. Painting made a huge difference in making the house look so much nicer.

I've been stalking facebook marketplace and snagged some great deals (like a free bench for the doorway, a free IKEA dining table set that just needed a little TLC and cleaning, and a free computer desk!). We've also been getting good sales at Costco and Target. The house is turning into a home.
While the kitchen isn't the nicest or biggest, I found an IKEA kitchen island for a good deal on facebook marketplace, and this is where I'll be taking my photos for the food blog. It's near by the back door with a window, so I'm hoping to get some decent lighting, AND I have a nice white wall for a background. I think out of all the placed I've lived in, this is the best setup for food photography, and I can't wait to take pictures of my baking here for the next few years. 

These lemon squares are some of the first photos from our kitchen! It's been a while since I've shared a lemon squares recipe. This recipe adapted from Ina Garten at Food Network.

Lemon Squares II

Ingredients
CRUST
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 cups flour
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

FILLING
6 eggs
2 1/3 cups granulated sugar
4-6 lemons grated lemon zest (desired tartness)
1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup flour
Confectioners' sugar, for dusting

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

CRUST: Cream the butter and sugar using an electric mixer or food processer. Combine the flour and salt with the creamed butter sugar mixture until just mixed. Gather dough into a ball (add flour as needed) and press it into a 8x8 baking sheet. 
Bake the crust for 15-20 minutes, until very lightly browned. Let cool on a wire rack. Leave the oven on.

FILLING: whisk together the eggs, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, and flour. Pour over the crust and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the filling is set. Let cool to room temperature. Cut into squares and dust with confectioners' sugar for decoration. Enjoy!

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