I had a friend request that I make her some lemon bars last week. Since I had lemons and limes in the house, I decided to see if changing out some of the lemons for limes would enhance the recipe. I do notice some difference, the aftertaste is more like 7-Up. Other than that, the lemon pretty much takes center stage. But what a lovely stage it is! The tart, creaminess of the lemons lime filling is perfectly contrasted with the sweet, buttery, crispness of the crust. The butter gives the crust a richness that’s hard to beat. The filling forms a crust on the top that is reminiscent of a brulee. Then, powdered sugar is lightly dusted over the top. Not a diet recipe but oh so good!
I had lost my original recipe for lemon bars so I adapted the recipe I found in Ina Garten’s book “Barefoot Contessa Parties!”. They’re a perfect light-tasting dessert for these hot summer days.
Lemon Lime Bars
Makes 24 bars
Ingredients for the crust;
1/2 Cup granulated sugar
2 Cups AP flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
Ingredients for the filling;
6 large eggs, at room temperature
3 Cups granulated sugar
2 Tablespoon lemon and lime zest (I used three lemons and three limes)
1 Cup lemon juice, (from the 3lemons and 3 limes I got just over 1/2 Cup of juice, I topped it up with Realemon juice)
1 Cup AP flour.
Powdered sugar for dusting over tops, optional
Place butter, cut into tablespoon sized pieces, in the bowl of your stand mixer equipped with the paddle attachment, and allow to soften while you measure out sugar, flour and salt (mix the salt into the flour). Start mixer on low speed and add sugar gradually 1/2 Cup at a time. Add flour mixture and mix until just combined. Should still be a few bits of butter visible.
Dump mixer bowl into 9 x 13 x 2-inch pan and press out until even with a 1/2-inch edge on the sides of the pan. Place pan in refrigerator to chill while you assemble the ingredients for the filling. Preheat oven to 350F.
Wipe out mixer bowl and refit with whisk attachment. With mixer on medium speed, whisk together the eggs, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, and flour. I started the mixer with the eggs only, then added the rest of the ingredients one at a time with the mixer running.
Remove crust from refrigerator and bake 15-20 minutes until it appears dry and slightly puffy. Pour filling over the warm crust and bake an additional 35-40 minutes until the filling is set. Allow it to cool to room temperature and cut into bars. If desired, dust with powdered sugar.
I’ve been looking at some ways to reduce the fat content of recipes. This Lemon Lime Bar recipe also gave me some ideas for other desserts I would like to create. Stay tuned for some new recipes coming soon!