Lemon Bars with Blueberry Balsamic Reduction

These are so good– flaky pastry, tart lemon, oozy blueberry. Deceptively easy to make, too, and perfect for summer! We just slopped on the blueberry sauce, but if you were feeling creative, I’m sure these could be decorated even more beautifully.

Preheat the oven to 350 and grease (really well) your pan. For the crust, start with two sticks of butter at room temp; this is where the microwave on low power can come in handy. Add 1/2 cup granulated sugar and, if you are using a mixer, cream until you have stiff peaks. I do not have a mixer so I had to hand whisk this and it was an enormous pain. Although honestly I think everything comes out better when you whisk by hand (like whipped cream) because you get more air into it, it really does hurt your arm after a while. You want the butter/sugar mix to be seriously fluffy and stand up straight when you lift the whisk up, no sad looking or floppy mix or you wont have flaky crust. Then combine 1/2 teaspoon salt and about 2 cups flour and slowly mix that in (with a spoon or your hands, not the whisk)– just enough so it combines. Too much mixing will squish all the air you just put in and you’ll have a hard crust. Flatten the dough and press it in to the sheet (put a little flour on your hands so it doesn’t stick to you). Chill for 20 minutes and then bake for 20 minutes; it should be very slightly brown.

Next for the lemon part! Put in 7 eggs, 2 and a half cups of sugar, lemon zest and lemon juice of about 8 or 9 lemons (should give you about a cup and a quarter of juice) and a cup of flour. Whisk it together; if you don’t have a mixer, sift the flour into the mix to avoid lumps. Pour on top of the crust and bake for 30 minutes. Do not over-bake or you will have a lemon flavored sponge, which I do not have to tell you is gross. Let it cool completely before putting the blueberry sauce on.

For the blueberry sauce, either mash your berries by hand, or throw them in the blender. You just need a handful. Add a glug or two of balsamic vinegar and a tablespoon of sugar. You could also add grated ginger or chopped basil. Sift in a pinch or so of cornstarch and reduce over heat for a few minutes until desired thickness. I like mine pretty thick so it’s not oozing all over the place. Once it cools, spoon into a pastry bag (or a plastic sandwich bag with the end snipped off) and squeeze however you would like over your lemon bars. I made squiggles.

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4 responses to “Lemon Bars with Blueberry Balsamic Reduction

  1. i’m totally making these.

  2. they look sooooo gooood! like made by a professional cook. Good food, good pictures.

  3. You guys seem to love lemon! So do I! I make an old-school lemon bar recipe (courtesy of my Grandma, but she probably ripped it off of Betty Crocker in the 50’s http://kristenpraz.blogspot.com/2008/04/lemon-bars.html) that is so amazing. I can’t wait to try these, though. Fancy Schmancy.

  4. I love lemon and balsamic and blueberries. Your combination of them is great. Thank you. Your photos are soooo yummmmy and convincing. I do not usually have any sugar in the house. So a trip to Whole Foods will make this dream come true!

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