Lemon Bars

Master this recipe and you’ve got two for one — lemon curd (the topping) and shortbread (the base). The lemon curd here is sort of a quick-and-dirty version, so you don’t have to boil it first. Just stir together and bake. I’m a die-hard chocoholic for most of the year, but I actually prefer lemon bars in the height of summer because the citrus flavor is lighter and more refreshing in the heat. — H. Weal

INGREDIENTS
SHORTBREAD
3/4 cup (128 grams) flour
1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup sugar

LEMON CURD
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons flour
2 eggs
1/4 cup lemon juice

TOOLS
medium (3-quart) mixing bowl
kitchen scale
measuring cups
mixing spoon
8-inch square baking pan
whisk, or fork

METHOD
1. Set oven to 325 degrees. Combine all SHORTBREAD ingredients in medium bowl. Beat together until well-blended and crumbly.
2. Spread and press down dough evenly into pan.
3. Bake until edges are lightly golden brown – about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, combine LEMON CURD ingredients as follows: Whisk together sugar and flour. Add eggs and lemon juice, then beat all together until well-blended.
4. Pour lemon curd mixture over shortbread crust. Bake until curd is set – about 12 minutes.
5. Allow to cool before cutting into bars.

NOTES & TIPS
• 2 lemons yield about 1/4 cup lemon juice.
• If using bottled unsweetened lemon juice, check that the ingredient list does not include lemon oil, which tends to make the juice taste more like floor cleaner than fruit.

READY IN
40 minutes

YIELD
12 bars

2 thoughts on “Lemon Bars

  1. This is a fan letter to tell you that this recipe is “bullet-proof’. I recently moved and I have a kitchen with a 30 year stove. I’m still learning how to use this thing. It’s electric, it has hot spots, cool spots and no spots. It is an education. Further, I’ve moved to a part of the country where white flower is slightly different and the weather is incredibly humid. Now, as we all know (or maybe we’d don’t) baking unlike cooking is a science. If you change the ingredients, the method and sometimes even the climate, you can come out with dramatically different results.

    So:
    Change #1. I prepared the mix for the shortbread exactly as directed and my batter was decidedly not crumbly. Okay, no problem…more dry ingredients while tasting all the way. The batter never became crumbly. It was a little stiffer but not crumbly. But it tasted pretty good.
    Change #2. I couldn’t find my baking tins. As I’ve said, I’ve moved recently and some things are still not unpacked. No problem. Used an 8 inch iron frying pan that I’ve baked corn bread in.
    Change #3. I had a jar of lemon curd that I’ve had for a while. It is delicious right out of the jar. Not home made but pretty good.
    Change #4. This is where the unfamiliarity with my oven comes into play. Set the oven to 325. Put adulterated mix in a different pan for the recommended 15 minutes and I had yellow cake. Put it back in for 15 minutes more and had the beginnings of a golden crust and but it was very soft in the middle. Put it back in for 10 minutes more, let it cool and slathered on the store brought lemon curd.

    Result: It was delicious!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yay! So glad it turned out well! I had an electric stove for awhile and hated that thing. LOL! But I had to learn how to use it and learn I did. I should be working on taking off a few pounds but lemon bars – yummmm!

    – L

    Like

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