Lemon Bars

To tell you the truth, these lemon bars existed over a few weeks ago. I don’t have an excuse for delaying the post – I just never got around to writing it. And now, I don’t even a story to tell about the lemon bars. I suppose I can talk about the leftover lemons that are still sitting in the fridge, but that’s not really interesting. Or perhaps I made the lemon bars because I could anticipate the sunny mood I’d be in when I would finally write the post. Sure, why not. I’m currently in a cheery mood because the weather’s finally reaching warmer temperatures around here! I never got used to the cold weather being a Texan gal, so I’m a happy camper during the summer time. It’s not summer yet, but at least I can retire my winter coat for now. Back to the lemons… they sure are sunny and cheery.

Lemon Bars
adapted from The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook

Ingredients:
1/2 pound unsalted butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 cups flour
1/8 teaspoon salt

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

Directions:
1. Preheat the oven to 350F and grease a 9×13 baking sheet.
2. For the crust, cream the butter and sugar until light in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.
3. Combine the flour and salt and, with the mixer on low, add to the butter until just mixed.
4. 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.
5. Bake the crust for 15 to 20 minutes, until very lightly browned. Let cool on a wire rack. Leave the oven on.
6. For the lemon layer, whisk together the eggs, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, and flour. Pour over the crust and bake for about 25 minutes. Let cool to room temperature.
7. Cut into squares and dust with confectioners’ sugar.

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