I know lemon bars aren't particularly unusual. But I've made four batches of these Meyer lemon bars in the past few months until I got the recipe exactly the way I liked it.
The first time I made them, my friend Don ate two. (You remember Don don't you? He of the four-course elk dinner and knife-cut noodles? I still need to tell you Don's story too...)
They were so good that when I made them again last week, lil' sis requested that I please not give them all away.
Since Meyer lemons are less tart, you might want to increase the sugar by about 1/4 cup if you're using regular lemons. Mmm. Meyer lemons.
My recipe uses twice more lemon juice than most recipes, but I think the natural sweetness and flavor of Meyer lemons really shines through that way.
Meyer Lemon Shortbread Bars/Squares
Adapted from The Cook's Encyclopedia of Cookies, Biscuits, and Bars
For an 8 by 8 inch pan, roughly 9 bars, you'll need:
For shortbread crust, you'll need:
1 cup flour
1 stick butter, about 1/2 cup, softened at room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
For Meyer lemon filling, you'll need:
1 cup Meyer lemon juice
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
Powdered sugar for topping.
Leave the butter out at room temperature until softened. Beat 1/4 cup sugar and 1 tsp vanilla extract into the butter until creamy.
Add in 1 cup flour and mix thoroughly. The mixture will be very loose and powdery.
Then, by hand, knead the flour in the bowl until it comes together. You can also dump this out on a table and do it, but I prefer to dirty as few things as possible. No dishwasher you see. Anyway, this should take just a few minutes until it looks like so.
Press into a greased 8x8-inch pan. Prick with a fork. Bake at 325 degrees for about 25 minutes.
While the shortbread crust is baking, it's time to prepare the lemon curd topping. Using the same bowl (so you don't have to wash any additional dishes), add 1 cup Meyer lemon juice, 1 cup sugar, 4 eggs, 1/4 cup flour, and 1 tsp baking powder. Set aside.
Now let's check on that shortbread shall we? Nice slightly golden crust. You don't want it too brown.
Now give the lemon/egg mixture a quick stir and pour it on top of the shortcrust. Bake for another 20 minutes until done.
Let cool for about 5 to 10 minutes. You can scrap off the burnt edges. Then top with powdered sugar.
I know it's hard to resist but the lemon bars are much better after they've cooled down a bit. Otherwise, the lemon curd will ooze everywhere. Slice into squares.
My other shortbread recipes:
Shortbread Cookies with Brown Sugar
Shortbread Cookies with Lavender
My other lemon recipes:
Baked Chicken with Citrus Marinade
Baked Chicken with Salt, Pepper, and Lemon
Chanh Muoi (Vietnamese Salty Lemonade)
Cuban Lemon Garlic Roast Chicken
Meyer Lemon Granitas
I'm submitting this recipe to Weekend Herb Blogging, a world-wide food blogging event created by Kalyn's Kitchen celebrating herbs, vegetables, or flowers. If you'd like to participate, see who's hosting next week. WHB returns home and is hosted this week by Kalyn.
1 year ago today, homemade Potstickers with Ground Pork and Turkey, Bamboo Shoots, and Cabbage.