Lemony deliciousness

When it comes to the world of treats I will always, always go chocolate.

I would rather have an OK piece of chocolate than an amazing piece of a fruity dessert. It’s just how I roll.

My husband, however, is the complete opposite.

I like Kit Kats, he like Sour Patch Kids

I like chocolate ice cream, he prefers orange sherbet

I like chocolate cake, he prefers lemon.

I don’t understand it. It just doesn’t make sense to me. Who in their right mind would choose licorice over a piece of milk chocolate?  Crazy people, that’s who.  Crazy people and my husband. Crazy people, my husband and his brothers. It must be a Blashaw thing.

So it being his birthday I decided to forgo making what might be considered one of my most favorite desserts, chocolate cake with butter cream frosting, to make him something lemon.

And it doesn’t get more lemony than lemon bars.

I like lemon bars but I am VERY picky about them. I don’t like when they taste too jello-y and they’re slopping all over the place. Gross.

I also don’t like when the lemon layer is so large and in charge it totally wipes out the taste of the shortbread cake underneath.

Apparently a blogger over at Smitten Kitchen (cute name) feels the same way so I used her recipe. If you do like a thicker lemon layer, follow the first recipe.

If you’re like me, use the second one.

These turned out great! Not to goopy and not too sweet  but  juuuust right. These are the Goldilocks version of lemon bars.


They really must be good because as a chocolate lover I did not expect to pound eight of these things in three days. But I did. (They’re small!!)

Here it is:

Lemon Bars
Adapted from The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook.

For the crust:
1/2 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 cups flour
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

For the full-size lemon layer:
6 extra-large eggs at room temperature
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 tablespoons grated lemon zest (4 to 6 lemons)
1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup flour

Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting

[Or] for a thinner lemon layer:

4 extra-large eggs at room temperature
1 2/3 cups granulated sugar
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest (3 to 4 lemons)
2/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
2/3 cup flour

Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting

Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease a 9 by 13 by 2-inch baking sheet.

For the crust, cream the butter and sugar until light in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Combine the flour and salt and, with the mixer on low, add to the butter until just mixed. Dump the dough onto a well-floured board and gather into a ball. Flatten the dough with floured hands and press it into the greased baking sheet, building up a 1/2-inch edge on all sides. Chill.

Bake the crust for 15 to 20 minutes, until very lightly browned. Let cool on a wire rack. Leave the oven on.

For the lemon layer, whisk together the eggs, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, and flour. Pour over the crust and bake for 30 to 35 minutes (less if you are using the thinner topping), or about five minutes beyond the point where the filling is set. Let cool to room temperature.

Cut into rectangles and dust with confectioners’ sugar.

Happy baking!


One thought on “Lemony deliciousness

  1. They were delicious and I am a chocolate lover first too. I blame the fruity thing on the oth side of the family but any good relationship forces you to stretch out of your comfort zone – at least that’s what they say. Make em again ok

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