Lemon Hedgehog Slice
Lemon Hedgehog or Lemon Coconut Slice became a feature of my childhood through my school's canteen. This slice (which I now see why) was milked for all it's worth - at the tuck shop, school functions, bake sales, everywhere! Having made it myself (by adapting it from the school's cookbook - yes they have one of those), I can see how it's the perfect recipe - one that can be made in advance & gets better with age.
Primarily made out of biscuits, butter, sweetened condensed milk & lemon - making this recipe reminds me of old church cookbooks, printed in typeset over a few lines granting minimal guidance. There's not much room for error. The shot of sugar even in an inch-square slice is a little jarring, but easily forgiven, as they are just very good. This recipe is also a true testament, for how far, just one lemon - can go.
- 450g vegan & gluten-free biscuits (eg. arrowroot, scotch finger - I used a mix of these & these)
- 90g desiccated coconut
- zest of 1 lemon, finely chopped
- 185g vegan butter
- 320g can coconut sweetened condensed milk (I used pandaroo)
- 265g icing sugar
- juice of 1 lemon
- 30g vegan butter, melted
- 40g dessicated coconut
- Line a 26 x 18 cm (10 x 7 inches), or similar slice tin with grease proof paper, granting plenty of overhang for easy removal.
- Using a sharp knife, slice your biscuits into small pieces/shards. You can blitz the biscuits briefly in a food processor, but I find that reduces most of them to rubble - you want to have lots of small bite-sized pieces. This is the most labour intensive step. Add the biscuit pieces to a bowl along with the coconut & lemon zest. Toss to coat.
- In a small saucepan, melt the butter & sweetened condensed milk together until runny & combined. Pour over the biscuit mix and stir thoroughly to combine. Make sure no dry mixture remains uncoated at the bottom of the bowl. Spoon the mixture into the lined tin & press down firmly with a spatula, smoothing over the top. Pop in the refrigerator to chill.
- Meanwhile, make your icing by combining the icing sugar with the lemon juice and melted butter until smooth & lump free (add a few drops of boiling water if your lemon was particularly dry, but you probably won't need it). Spread over the slice, in one even layer (I find this straightforward to do, even if it's still a little warm - but you can wait until it's hardened if you prefer) & sprinkle with the extra desiccated coconut to finish.
- Refrigerate for at least 8 hours/overnight to set, before slicing & serving. This slice gets better with age, so store in the fridge & enjoy at your leisure.