I have never really been a lemon bar lover. In fact, if I have to chose between a fruity dessert and a chocolate one – chocolate will win out every time. (Well, unless you count Twizzlers as fruity dessert :-)) That being said, our friend Lydia has made lemon bars for us a few times, and every time I try one, I am pleasantly surprised. With the weather being over 80 degrees on Sunday, I just had this craving to whip up a batch of lemon bars. The result was so summery that I now officially have spring fever! I actually really like the box mix of lemon bars, but I will tell you that these have a definite extra punch of lemon flavor. So be warned: True Lemon Lovers Only!
For the Crust
- 1 3/4 c. all purpose flour
- 2/3 c. powdered sugar
- 1/4 c. cornstarch
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 sticks (12 T.) butter, slightly softened, cut into 1 inch pieces
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 13×9 baking sheet with parchment paper, then line the pan again with parchment in the opposite direction to allow you to lift the bars out when finished. In a food processor, pulse the flour, powdered sugar, cornstarch and salt. Add the butter and pulse until mixture resembles course meal. Sprinkle mixture into the pan and press down evenly with fingers. Bake until slightly golden, about 20 minutes. In the meantime start on the filling…
For the Lemon Filling
- 4 large eggs, slightly beaten
- 1 1/3 c. granulated sugar
- 3 T. all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest (about 2 lemons)
- 2/3 cup lemon juice, strained (about 4 lemons)
- 1/3 cup milk (I used skim, but whole would be better)
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
Whisk eggs, sugar and flour in a medium bowl. Add the lemon juice, lemon zest, milk and salt and blend. Once the crust is golden brown, reduce oven temperature to 325° and pour the lemon mixture into the warm crust. Bake for about 22 minutes, or until the filling feels firm.
Remove from the oven and cool to room temperature (at least 30 minutes). Remove the lemon bars from the pan by lifting up on the parchment (The bars may bend, but won’t break). Cut bars using sharp knife and cleaning the knife between cuts. Sift powdered sugar on top right before serving.
Slightly adapted from Cook’s Illustrated