I am impressed! I added 1/4 tsp. of salt to the crust as suggested by other members. I also added 1 tsp. lemon zest (from a jar) and some yellow food coloring to the filling. I used 1/2 cup of fresh lemon juice, and it was a little bit too tart for me. Next time, I’ll try using 1/3 cup. The crust was beautiful. The bars were even better after they were refrigerated. My husband loved them so much, he wants to eat them for breakfast!
These are VERY good and I am a very picky cook! I did cheat a little, and made a couple of changes. First, I used a pie crust mix and added some sugar to it, then pressed into a pie plate and baked. I used butter-flavored cooking spray on the pie plate.
I used bottled lemon juice, and added extra, so it came to about 1/2 cup. Now, we love lemon flavor. For those who don’t like the sweet tart, don’t use extra lemon. I baked for closer to 25 minutes, let cool, and then dusted with powdered sugar before cutting. Keep in mind that these really need to be stored in the refrigerator. They are fabulous! Hubby and kids loved them and so did I! This recipe is a keeper!
One more comment, I would not use salt in the crust if you are using salted butter. I used salted butter and it tasted perfect.
My first attempt at lemon bars… and it was a complete disaster! The only thing I can think of that might have turned this ugly is the use of parchment paper under the crust in a glass Pyrex baking dish. In the middle of baking, I checked on them to make sure they weren’t getting too brown…. and the crust had floated to the top! The parchment was somewhere in the middle, with lemon filling above and below it.
What a waste and what a a mess! I did cook it through, just in case it could be salvaged, but it was a goner. I tasted a small piece minus the paper, and it would have been great had the crust stayed where it was supposed to….
This was my first attempt at lemon bars and was very happy with the results. I used 1/2 C. fresh lemon juice and found it to be nice and lemony, without being tart or sour. The only complaint was that I did not have a distinct line between my crust and the lemon custard. The custard wasn’t visually distinct like I wanted, but the flavor and consistancy was great. Maybe I should have let the crust cool more. Overall though, the crust was buttery (I used salted butter) and pleasantly dense, the custard was smooth and lemony, and the overall result was very nice.
3¼ cups – 250 grams – organic all purpose flour such as king arthur flour
3 teaspoons – about 7 grams baking powder
1 – 7-ounce/220 gram – package cream cheese such as philadelphia softened
½ cup – 1 stick/113 grams – unsalted butter softened
1½ cups – 300 grams – granulated sugar
3 tablespoons – 13 grams – freshly grated lemon zest from 3 large lemons
1½ tablespoons – 22.5 ml – freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon – 6 ml – pure vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon – a few drops- lemon oil such as boyajian omit for gluten free variation
1/8 teaspoon natural yellow gel based food coloring such as chefmaster
1 teaspoon – 6 grams- kosher salt or ¾ teaspoon regular table salt
1 large egg plus 1 large egg yolk – mine weighed 70 grams w-o shells-
1 cup – 125 grams- confectioners sugar sifted for rolling and dusting cookies
in a medium bowl whisk together flour and baking powder until well blended set aside using an electric stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment or handheld electric mixer cream.
together cream cheese and butter until well blended creamy and smooth beat in sugar lemon zest and juice vanilla lemon oil food coloring and salt mix until well combined light and fluffy scraping the bowl with a rubber spatula when necessary add egg and egg yolk and beat in well until creamy and light about 1 to 3 minutes on medium speed
on low speed gradually add flour mixture and mix until just fully incorporated dough will be very sticky cover work bowl and refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight
meanwhile arrange oven rack in lower third of oven and preheat oven to 320ºF – 160ºC- line two baking sheets with parchment paper- set aside place confectioners’ sugar in a small bowl- set aside
measure enough dough to roll into generous 1 inch balls using a 1 1/4 inch spring-loaded cookie scoop – or by measuring a generous tablespoon of dough with a measuring spoon- making sure each scoopful is in equal amounts this is important for evenly baked cookies
roll dough between palms of hands to achieve a small rounded ball and then roll in confectioners’ sugar to lightly coat place dough balls on prepared baking sheets at least 3 inches apart
bake in preheated oven until cookies have spread into round cookie shapes and are puffed and crackly, about 15 minutes do not overbake the cookies will still be soft in the centers If they start to brown around the edges they have baked too long the underside of the cookies should be only very lightly browned
transfer to wire rack and allow cookies to cool completely on baking sheet once completely cooled carefully remove cookies from baking sheet using a thin metal cookie spatula and transfer to an airtight container repeat with remaining dough on prepared cookie sheets
if desired chill the cookies in the refrigerator in an airtight container before serving dust cookies with additional confectioners sugar serve cookies chilled or at room temperature.