Yield: Yields sixteen 1-1/2-inch bars; 2-1/2 cups curd.
These bars will last several days in the refrigerator in an airtight container but are best when fresh. The recipe can be doubled. The quantities for flour and butter are given by weight (ounces) and by volume (cups or tablespoons); use either measurement.
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Make Ahead Tips
Shortbread dough can be wrapped in plastic and frozen for up to two months. When you want to make lemon bars (or any other shortbread-based recipe), just let the dough thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
I was very surprised to see a couple of less than glowing reviews of this recipe. This is by far my favorite version, although like some other reviewers I use a different pat in shortbread dough for the crust. The curd is bright tasting. I sometimes make extra curd to have on hand. Some version of lemon bar are so sweet that the lemon flavor hardly matters. If it's a Joanne Chang recipe you may be sure it's a good one.
These should really be called Lemon Tart Bars, to avoid confusing them with the expected luscious taste of the sweet confection Lemon Squares or Lemon Bars.These have a bright unique flavor, and people who enjoy biting into lemons will die for them. Unfortunately, they weren't as universally loved as the traditional lemon squares. I placed a plate of these next to a plate of traditional lemon squares at a party. I got great compliments over them, but only a couple people went back for seconds. The traditional lemon squares vanished before the first hour.The recipe is also more demanding and creates leftover dough and egg whites.Traditional lemon squares are a great first recipe to teach your 6 year old. Very fast, safe, and easy, with little room for error. These have great room for error, from difficulties in rolling the dough to size, aligning it to the pan, potential for burning the egg mixture, and even scalding while working with hot liquids.I highly recommend trying them, but only if you and your friends like really tart "pucker-face" flavors.
I made this recipe with the crust from a different lemon squares recipe (Company's Coming). The curd is very tart, and the reactions ranged from the best puck face I've ever seen, to highly complimentary. I'd do it again! The base I used didn't hold up well with the left over pieces, though, it did get a bit soggy.
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