Thursday, July 18, 2013

Lemon Bars

So many of the recipes I post come from Mel over at I love her food, her writing and I have never had a recipe that she has posted fail me. This one is no different. Our family was invited to a little get together on Monday night to meet some of the new neighbors in the neighborhood where we are building our new house. I wanted to contribute something to the evening...I never really feel comfortable arriving at the home of someone kind enough to have us over empty handed. I saw this recipe on Mel's page and thought they looked pretty and summery. They did not disappoint. The crust is especially phenomenal. They were light, creamy, sweet but not sickly and we thoroughly enjoyed one...ok maybe three of them. Don't mind the pics. I literally took them in the car on the way to our get together. Lemon Bars INGREDIENTS For the Crust: 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour 2/3 cup powdered sugar, plus extra to sprinkle on bars 1/4 cup cornstarch 1/2 teaspoon salt 12 tablespoons butter (1 1/2 sticks), at cool room temperature, cut into 1-inch pieces For the Filling: 4 large eggs 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest, from 2 large lemons 2/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, from 3 to 4 large lemons 1/3 cup milk Pinch of salt (about 1/8 teaspoon) DIRECTIONS Place an oven rack in the middle position and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9X13-inch baking pan with foil or parchment paper and lightly grease the foil/parchment. Stir together the flour, powdered sugar, cornstarch, and salt (this can be done in a food processor or in a large bowl by hand). Add the pieces of butter and cut the butter into the dry ingredients using a pastry blender, two knives or your fingers (taking care not to melt the butter too much - you might try freezing the butter and grating it into the dry ingredients on the large holes of a box grater) or process in the food processor for 8 to 10 seconds and then as needed until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Sprinkle the mixture into the prepared pan and press into an even layer on the bottom and about 1/2-inch up the sides of the pan. Refrigerate for 15-30 minutes. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes. For the filling, whisk together the eggs, sugar, and flour in a medium bowl and then stir in the lemon zest, juice and milk to combine. Pour the filling onto the warm crust (it's important that the crust is still warm!) and reduce the oven temperature to 325 degrees. Bake for about 18-20 minutes until the filling feels slightly firm to the touch. Cool the bars to room temperature, sprinkle with additional powdered sugar and cut into bars.