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Best Lemon Bars Ever

12 January 2010 3,289 views 20 Comments

We have a dormant orchard in our backyard. According to Adam, there are a cluster of lemon, lime, and grapefruit trees — also a loquat, pomegranate, and fig.

Recently, the lemon tree began to droop with lots of lemons. It’s apparently lemon season in Central Texas! Adam told me that he wanted to use a third of the lemons for preserves and that I could make whatever I wanted with the remainder.

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I decided on lemon bars. According to the Internets, Ina Garten’s recipe for lemon bars are just the best in the world. Coincidentally, one of the cookbooks I own is Garten’s Barefoot Contessa Parties!

My dear friend Jessica helped me with the painstaking process of collecting two tablespoons of fresh lemon zest and juicing one cup of lemon juice. This was even more heroic because she had a paper cut at the time.

The result of our labors was the perfect blend of not too sour or too sweet lemony filling on top of a shortbready, buttery crust and dusted with powdered sugar.

lemon bars
There are only two small bars left in the fridge. Those preserved lemons will have to wait until next year. Batch #2 is calling our names!

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  • http://readytoeat.wordpress.com/ Sinda

    Jodi, you guys are sitting on a goldmine! Those lemon bars look divine, and I can't wait to see what you do with the rest of that fruit this year.

  • http://adamnorwood.com/ Adam Norwood

    Those lemon bars look great! I'd definitely trust the Barefoot Contessa's dessert recipes to be good.

    One of our Christmas presents this year was a Microplane grater. Lemons, limes, and oranges are no match for our zesting abilities now!

  • http://tastytouring.com/ Jodi

    Thanks for the comments guys. @Sinda: I WISH some of the other trees fruited but unfortunately they aren't producing much these days.

    @Adam: I wish I could share some of the bars with you. I brought them to work today but I don't think they will last long. A microplane grater is a GREAT gift.

  • admin

    Thanks for commenting, @sinda and @adam!

    Unfortunately, most of the other trees are dormant right now so we are hoping that they will still fruit.

    @Adam: If we still worked together you could be eating a lemon bar right now! I brought ‘em in to work. I love the microplane grater :-)

  • http://www.tipsytexan.com/ Tex

    yo dude we need to come have a backyard citrus orgy cocktail party at your house. I can't believe you have a Tipsy Garden… mine is still in pots

  • http://www.tipsytexan.com/ Tex

    yo dude we need to come have a backyard citrus orgy cocktail party at your house. I can't believe you have a Tipsy Garden… mine is still in pots

  • http://www.bootsintheoven.com Rachel @ boots in the oven

    Owie, lemon squeezing with paper cuts? Pain pain pain. I can attest to these lemon bars being delicious.

    Another lemon bar recipe I've had good luck with was one of Michael Ruhlman's in How to Cook Everything. But yes, I would always trust Ina with desserts!

  • FoodieIsTheNewForty

    Those really were wonderful lemon bars! Thanks for sharing the recipe!

  • McKinzey

    Ok, those are two of my FAVORITE things: Ina Garten & lemons. I'm trying those!

  • http://tastytouring.com/ Jodi

    That would be awesome, David. Right now we have no fruit since Adam harvested just before the freeze and the other citrus trees didn't fruit this year. I wanted to bring lemons to your house for the superbowl but ended up just watching it at home. Sorry to have missed Kristi yelling at the TV!

  • jodibart

    @Rachel: We have How to Cook Everything at home also. I'll have to compare the recipes.
    @Michelle: Glad you guys like them. I had to hold my breath while you were sampling!
    @McKinzey: You are sweet.

  • Jeremy

    Those are awesome bars!

  • jodibart

    I'm a sucker for compliments! I'm going to have to bake for friends more often!

  • Jeremy

    Those are awesome bars!

  • jodibart

    I'm a sucker for compliments! I'm going to have to bake for friends more often!

  • linda

    hi jodi,
    these are on my “to bake” list. i have been re-creating “baked: new frontiers in baking” cookbook's lemon lemon loaf & have had good success…delicious (great texture, moist & just the right amount of lemon) …the lemon soak & glaze are wonderful…give the recipe a try!

    http://www.projectfoodie.com/spotlights/cookboo

    have a good week! :)

  • jodibart

    That lemon loaf sounds divine. Next time I'm blessed with a richness of lemons, I'm making it!

  • jodibart

    That lemon loaf sounds divine. Next time I'm blessed with a richness of lemons, I'm making it!

  • jodibart

    That lemon loaf sounds divine. Next time I'm blessed with a richness of lemons, I'm making it!

  • jodibart

    That lemon loaf sounds divine. Next time I'm blessed with a richness of lemons, I'm making it!