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It’s July already and I’m just now thinking about St Patrick’s Day. Typical. Significant dates, events or holidays always seem to catch me off guard. I even forgot our wedding anniversary last year! And yet these dates are annual reminders to us of the beliefs, traditions, and relationships that are important to us, and are worth celebrating! They are often accompanied by special food and drink, for instance, green food or Guinness on St Pat’s, chocolate at Valentine’s and roast lamb on Easter Sunday.

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I rarely plan ahead enough to cook special dishes for special occasions, but now I have a plan! Why not come up with ideas for celebration food throughout the year, and then I’m waaay ahead when that holiday comes round again. Like with this kiwifruit, lime and coconut slice. Of course, the Irish may not have eaten kiwi fruit, actually I’m sure they did not, and there’s no potato or Guinness in sight, but there is green. And green food, though common in fruit and vegetables, is rarely seen in cakes.

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A few months back, limes were super-cheap and I had to make something with them before the price returned to normal. First I made some kiwifruit, lime and coconut muffins, and they were pretty good! Then I made a version of lime bars, which were awesome, and I have used the same gluten-free shortbread base here. Top that with an easy, tangy kiwifruit jam and sticky, sweet coconut topping, I think we have a contender for St Patrick’s Day… three months too late, but who’s complaining?!

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Kiwifruit, Lime and Coconut Slice {gf}
Layers upon layers of sweet goodness, first the buttery shortbread, topped with homemade jam, and finally a coconut meringue. So, green! So good!

Makes 16

Ingredients
For the jam
500g (1lb) kiwi fruit, halved
¼ cup (110g) caster (super-fine) sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon chia seeds

For the base
2/3 cup (75g) plain (all-purpose) gluten-free flour
¼ cup (35g) brown rice flour
¼ cup (56g) gluten-free cornflour (cornstarch)
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon baking powder
100g (7 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened*
1/3 cup (75g) caster (super-fine) sugar
2 teaspoons finely grated lime zest
1 egg yolk

For the coconut topping
2 egg whites
½ cup (110g) caster (super-fine) sugar
½ tsp vanilla extract
1 ½ cups moist coconut flakes or shredded coconut
To serve: pure icing sugar, sifted

Method
To make the jam, scoop flesh from kiwi halves with spoon into stainless steel pot; discard skins. Mash flesh until smooth. Stir in sugar and bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat, add in lime juice and chia seeds, and give it a good stir. Transfer to a container and refrigerate to chill (1-2 hours). Jam can be made 2-3 days ahead.

For the shortbread base, preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease a 20 cm (8 x 8-inch) square baking pan and line with baking paper, leaving 5 cm overhang.

In small bowl, whisk together gluten free flour, rice flour, cornflour, salt, and baking powder. In bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, or with an electric hand beater, cream butter, sugar and lime zest together on medium-low speed, until a thick paste forms, about 30 seconds. Add egg yolk and beat. Add dry ingredients and beat until a dough forms, about three minutes. Press into prepared baking dish.

Bake crust in the preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until very lightly golden.

Whisk egg whites and a pinch of salt in an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar and whisk to soft peaks (2-3 minutes). Whisk in vanilla, then fold in 1 ½ cups coconut.

Spread ½ cup kiwifruit jam over the cooked shortbread base, and then the coconut mixture evenly over the top of the jam. Bake for a further 20 minutes or until golden and set.

Cool completely in tray, dust with icing sugar, then cut into bars and store in an airtight container until required. Slice will keep for 1-2 days.

Notes
Inspired by Gourmet Traveller

By all means, feel free to sub in another jam if you prefer… Or make your own chia jam with any type of fruit or berry – The Kitchn with show you how!

*To make this slice dairy-free, use vegan margarine instead.

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