I confess that I have a disproportionately large number of lemon desserts on my blog. I just love a lemony dessert – the tartness of the lemon cuts through the sweetness of the sugar and I love that in a dessert. I also have a lemon tree in my garden that yields ridiculous amounts of lemons in season, so I am always looking to use them as there is nothing better than a fresh lemon off the tree for that potent, zingy lemon flavor.
What I love about these lemon bars is that they are the simplest and quickest bars I have come across. In less than a half an hour you will have a batch of these zesty bars baking away. And there are no special ingredients required, so, beware, you can whip them up on a whim.
1½ cups flour
½ cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons corn starch
Pinch of salt
¾ cup butter or non-dairy butter
4 beaten eggs
1½ cups sugar
3 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon lemon zest (optional)
¾ cup fresh lemon juice
¼ cup milk or non-dairy milk
How to do it
- Pre-heat the oven to 180°C (350°F)
- Line a 33x22x5cm (13x9x2-inch) baking pan with baking paper and grease the paper
- In a bowl, mix together the 1½ cups flour, powdered sugar, cornstarch and salt. Using a pastry blender or two knives, cut the butter into the dry mixture until it resembles course crumbs. Press the mixture firmly and evenly into the bottom of the pan – it is quite a dry mixture. Bake for 18-20 minutes until the edges start to get golden brown.
- While the base is baking, in a bowl combine the eggs, sugar, 3 tablespoons flour, lemon zest, lemon juice, and milk. Mix well so all the sugar is dissolved.
- When the base is baked, immediately pour the lemon mixture over the base and return to the oven. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the center is set and the top starts getting a little golden in color.
- Cool completely before cutting into bars. Just before serving, dust with powdered sugar put through a sieve. Don’t add the powdered sugar too early or the bars will absorb them.
Makes 24 bars. If there are any left over, store them in the fridge.