I got this recipe several years ago from a Taste of Home Magazine. It's not complicated, it just requires some time and attention. The nice thing about it is you make everything ahead of time and then assemble at the last minute. It's easy to assemble. It's elegant. And it's very rich and yummy! Everyone raves when I make it. I made it recently for my mom's retirement party and I had several people come up to me telling me it was delicious. My mom also received compliments on it.
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup butter, melted
CREAM CHEESE LAYER:
1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
3 cups confectioners' sugar
1 carton (8 ounces) frozen whipped topping, thawed
1-1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1-3/4 cups cold water
3 egg yolks, beaten
2/3 cup lemon juice
2 tablespoons butter
4 teaspoons grated lemon peel (I never put this In)
In a small bowl, combine flour and pecans; stir in butter. Press into an ungreased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish. Bake at 350° for 18-20 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.
In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and confectioners' sugar until smooth. Fold in whipped topping. Crumble the baked pecan mixture; set aside 1/2 cup for topping.
In a medium heavy saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch and flour. Stir in water until smooth. Cook and stir over medium-high heat until thickened and bubbly. Reduce heat; cook and stir 2 minutes longer.
Remove from the heat. Stir a small amount of hot mixture into egg yolks; return all to the pan, stirring constantly. Put back on the heat and bring to a gentle boil; cook and stir 2 minutes longer. Remove from the heat. Gently stir in the lemon juice, butter and lemon peel.
Transfer to a large bowl. Cool to room temperature without stirring. Cover surface with waxed paper; refrigerate until chilled.
Just before serving, in a 3-qt. trifle bowl, layer 1 cup each pecan mixture, lemon mixture and cream cheese mixture. Repeat layers twice. Sprinkle with reserved pecan mixture. Refrigerate leftovers.
This isn't very good leftover (the crust gets soggy). So only assemble what you plan to use.