Very Best Lemon BarsThursday, June 01, 2006
Since tonight begins Shavuos, I decided rather than making Av a cheesecake (because it's traditional to have something dairy), I would make him something that he equally loves...and has plenty of dairy ingredients - his favorite lemon bars! I make these several times a year, and they always, always turn out perfectly.
For the crust:
1-3/4 c. all-purpose flour (I use White Lily)
2/3 c. confectioner's sugar
1/4 c. cornstarch
12 tbsp. butter, very cold, cut into small cubes
1/2 tsp. salt
For the lemon filling:
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
1-1/3 c. sugar
2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
juice from three or four large lemons - you won't use it all, but you'll need enough to add to your taste
1/3 c. sweet milk
1/8 tsp. salt
First, make the crust. Preheat the oven to 350*. Use a 13x9 baking dish (or a 8x8 like I have and use about 3/4 the recipe for the crust). Rub some butter inside the baking dish and line with parchment paper (the butter helps make the paper stick to the pan).
Take your Cuisinart and add the flour, confectioner's sugar, and salt.
Next, add the butter a little at a time and pulse the mixture until it just starts to hold together.
Press the dough into the pan. Since this time I wanted to use my 8x8 pan, I only used about 3/4 the quantity of dough. If you're using the bigger 13x9 pan, you'll be using all the dough. Be sure to press it in well, and up the sides a little so when you pour the filling in later, it will make a bit of a well. Refrigerate this for 30 minutes, then cook for between 30 and 40 minutes, or until it gets to be a nice light brown. Once this comes out of the oven, lower the oven to 325*.
Next, go ahead and start the filling by squeezing the lemons for juice, and reserve.
Break four eggs into a medium-size bowl and whisk gently.
...then add the sugar, flour, milk, and salt. Add the lemon juice a little at a time and keep testing in between until you get the exact amount you like of lemon flavor.
Pour the filling gently over the still-warm crust. It's okay if it goes over the tops of the crust a little, but you don't want to do it too much to keep the crust from getting soggy.
Now, put this back in the 325* oven for 30-40 minutes, or until it doesn't 'jiggle in the middle' - you want it just this side of *completely* set when it comes out, because it will continue to set after it comes out of the oven. Put the pan over a wire rack and let cool *at least* thirty minutes. Next, just lift out with the parchment paper, and cut into bars.