Today, I’m loving lemon bars. Snowmageddon Part Deux or Trois, I can’t keep up, is on it’s way today, this second last day of February and I’m trying hard not to get cranky. I am so over this winter. But the signs are there that spring is just around the corner. The days are getting a little bit longer and the cold is not quite as cold as it was and there are tulips in the stores which means tulips in the ground can’t be far behind. So when life hands you lemons, make lemon desserts is what I say.
There’s this Lemonade Cake or this divine Lemon Crème Brûlée Tart which are sure to pick up any winter weary souls spirits. For the ultimate in simplicity though you can’t beat these Simple Lemon Bars. No late winter storm is going to get me down with these lemon bars in the house. No sirree, I’m going to stare at my tulips and nibble on a little bit of summer and ignore that storm outside.
Simple Lemon Bars
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup of confectioners’ sugar
1 1/2 tsps finely grated lemon zest
3/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2″ pieces
6 large eggs
2 1/2 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp lemon zest
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 tbsp confectioners’ sugar for dusting
Preheat oven to 325F. Line a 13x9x2 baking pan with foil and butter the foil.
In a large bowl combine flour, confectioners’ sugar, zest and salt. Using a mixer on low speed, beat just to blend the ingredients. Add the butter pieces and beat until the largest pieces are about the size of a pea. Dump the contents into your baking pan and firmly and evenly press the dough over the bottom and up the sides by 1 inch. Bake until the edges are lightly browned about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.
Reduce oven temp to 300F.
While crust is baking, break eggs into a large bowl and whisk until just blended. Add the granulated sugar, lemon juice and zest and whisk until smooth. Sift the flour into the bowl and whisk until incorporated. Slowly pour the filling over the crust. Carefully return to oven and bake until the filling doesn’t wobble when the pan is shaken — 40 to 45 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool to room temperature, then cover and transfer to refrigerator for at least 4 hours.
Lift using aluminum foil and place on cutting board. Cut into 48 squares. Sift with confectioners’ sugar. Store in the refrigerator. Give these lemon bars to winter distressed family and friends to let them know spring isn’t far away.