Triple Fruit Blondies

These beautiful blondies marry the zingy tang of three different citrus fruits with the fudgy richness of white chocolate and caramel. What a combination.

Makes: 16 medium squares

Level: The blondie is straight-forward, the decorating option is slightly less easy.

Time: About 90 minutes + cooling time + decorating time

Equipment: 20cm/8” square tin, ideally loose bottomed with high sides, a food processor, cocktail sticks*, brush*, small angled spatula*.

*Only needed for the optional decorating

Fruit pulp – ingredients

  • 1 lime
  • ½ lemon (use second half for zest* )
  • ½ medium orange (as above*)
  • 2 – 3 tsp sugar (granulated or caster)

* It’s a bit awkward to zest a cut fruit, so you might prefer to do it before cutting or use a whole second fruit.

Blondie – main ingredients

  • 225g /8oz butter chopped into small pieces, plus a little for greasing
  • 200g /7oz white chocolate, chopped into small pieces
  • 175g /6oz plain flour (all purpose)
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 200g /7oz soft, light brown sugar
  • 100g /3.5oz golden caster sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • About 200g /7oz fruit pulp, or a little more

Decorating option – ingredients

  • 150g /5.5oz white chocolate
  • Green, yellow and orange food colours (not water based)
  • Zest of another lime + zest from lemon & orange halves

Method

1. To make the fruit pulp, cut the lime, half lemon and half orange into small pieces, removing any pips and large pieces of white membrane. (It’s OK to use some or all of the peel.) Whizz in a food processor with the sugar until they become a pulp. You need about 200g – 250g of pulp, 7oz – 9oz. Set aside to use later.

2. Grease the tin with a little butter, then line the base and sides with baking parchment.   

3. Melt together the butter and 100g white chocolate either in a bain marie or the microwave, stirring frequently. Leave to cool for 5 – 10 minutes.

4. Heat oven to 180C / 160C fan / 350F / Gas 4. Combine the flour and baking powder in a bowl, with ¼ tsp salt.

5. Place the sugar and eggs in a large bowl. Use an electric hand whisk or stand mixer to beat the mixture until it looks thick and foamy – about 5 – 7 minutes. The egg mixture is ready when it leaves a trail, which sits on the surface for a couple of seconds.

6. Pour the cooled melted chocolate into the whisked eggs and sugar then tip in the citrus pulp. Use a spatula or large metal spoon to gently fold everything together.

7. Sieve the flour mixture into the bowl and fold together again. Stir in the remaining chocolate chunks.

8. Pour the mixture into the tin, smoothing it into the corners. Tap the tin on your work surface to settle the mixture.

9. Bake for 35-45 mins for soft centred blondies. Add on another 5 minutes for a more cake-like texture. Check if the blondies are cooked by giving the tin a gentle shake, they should be mostly set, but a little wobble in the centre is fine.      

10. Cool in the tin. If you want a flat surface to decorate then invert the block when you remove it.

You could cut and serve the blondies now, with no further activity, or just dust with icing sugar, they’ll be great. If, however, you want to go a bit further, here’s one decorating option. (NB Read carefully first and be prepared to work quickly. Also, lay out all you need ready at hand before starting.)

11. Set out your equipment: food colours, cocktail sticks, brush, spatula etcetera then melt 150g white chocolate in a bain marie or micro-wave.

12. Brush off any crumbs from the blondie block then pour over the chocolate and spread it evenly. Working quickly, put small drops of colour randomly onto the chocolate. Use cocktail sticks – one per colour – to lightly drag the coloured drops over the surface to create a pleasing pattern. Take care not to dig too deeply.

13. Grate or sprinkle the zests over the chocolate before it sets and hardens.

14. Put the block in the fridge for a while then cut into pieces.