Thursday, August 9, 2012

Pinky Lemonade Bars


Our younger daughter is visiting.  She doesn't get here as often as she used to.  It is a three hour drive and she does have a job.  So we are grateful when she comes.

My girls frequently call me when they are coming and ask me to make something they read on a blog.  Not MY blog you understand, but someone ELSE'S blog.  Often they choose something from Smitten Kitchen.  In addition to recipes she has cute baby pictures.  I guess that would trump my country living blog...

We decided to make the pink lemonade bars. Because my sister's nickname was Pinky, I decided to alter the name to Pinky Lemonade Bars.  I did not change the recipe and it is as follows.

Pinky Lemonade Bars

The bottom layer:

1/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup ( 1 stick), butter, cut into chunks
1 cup flour

For the lemonade layer:

1 cup raspberries ( We just used the small flat container from the market.)
2 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
1/3 cup flour
Powdered sugar

Preheat the oven to 350.  Line an 8X8 baking pan with parchment.  Cut it along two sides and leave the other sides long so they extend up the sides.  You will use this to remove the bars later so give yourself a bit of room to grab them, but not so long they touch anything in the oven.

Spray the inside and around the edges of the pan and set aside.


I used a micro plane to zest a large lemon.  I used almost the whole lemon and it made more than the 1/4 teaspoon called for in the recipe.  I didn't measure and used all I "zested".


Place the sugar, zest and salt in a food processor.  Pulse about 10 times for one second each.  Add the cubed butter and pulse until even distributed. 

Add the flour and once again, pulse until the mixture is crumbly, about 10 times.


Press the dough into the prepared pan.  Bake for 15 minutes until lightly browned at the edges.  Let it cool on a rack while you make the filling.  Don't turn off the oven.  You will need it at 350 to finish the bars.


While the "cookie" part is baking, start on the filling.

Puree the raspberries in the food processor.  We followed the part of the recipe where we are told NOT to bother cleaning it first.  Love those time saving hints!  Run the processor until the raspberries are liquefied. 


Pour it into a strainer that is held over a bowl.  Make sure you can't tip it over.  You don't have enough berries to start over!  Press the berries through the strainer.  You will end up with a bunch of seeds on top and some raspberry puree on the bottom.

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and the sugar together.  Ordinarily I would be using my KitchenAid mixer for this, but there is only so much room on my counter...and so many large appliances I am willing to clean for one dish!  When they are a creamy yellow, add in the lemon juice.


Add in 3 Tablespoons of the puree.  We had more than that, so we put in 4 Tablespoons.  The recipe warned us about too much liquid,  and suggested we keep the lemon juice and the raspberry puree to 7 Tablespoons in total.  I had already added the lemon juice when I realized I had a lot of puree.  I went with the 4 Tablespoons of puree and it was fine.  Don't do more than that though!


Stir in the flour.  Pour the mixture in the cooling crust.  Return the bars to the oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes.  Once again the sides of the bars will just start to turn a golden brown.  Cool completely.


I have a plastic knife that I use to cut in my coated pans.  I gently pressed it on the edges with out the parchment paper.  When I could feel that it was loose, I lifted the whole thing with the long sides of the parchment paper and placed it on a cutting board.  Tara used the long knife to release the bars from the paper and slid it out.  We cut it into squares.  Using the same strainer, sprinkle some powdered sugar over the top.  Unfortunately, THIS time you will have to wash and dry between steps!


I plated the bars for a picture.  My artistic attempt had me placing one bar on the other so that the lemon layer would show.  Tara cut a slice of the lemon we didn't use and added a few raspberries.  I think I need a full time food stylist!  And sous chef!

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