Thursday, May 20, 2010

Liz Lemon Bars

I've had dreams of meeting Tina Fey. They usually end up with me being so in awe of her that I stand gaping in shock until she says something really witty and funny to break the awkward silence. Then we become best friends. If only that was a true story.

Anyway I happened to stumble upon Tina Fey's birthday online the other day, and it turns out that May 18th is her birthday. It also so happens that I have wanted to make lemon bars for quite some time now (they are pretty much my favorite dessert to ever grace the face of the earth), and here's the crazy part: Tina Fey's character on 30 Rock is named Liz Lemon, so I decided to metaphorically kill two birds with one stone. I'd celebrate her birthday AND make my favorite dessert by baking Liz Lemon Bars. So without further ado, here are the pictures from May 18th of my first attempt at making lemon bars.

For the crust, it's a wonderful, crumbly mixture of sugar, butter and flour. It looks like breadcrumbs when mixed properly, so don't be afraid to dump it in the pan at this point - it's what you're supposed to do!

Then you pat the crust-crumbs down in the pan so that it is more solid-looking. As per the instructions (below), bake this in the oven at 325 F for 20 minutes.

Make sure that you let the bars cool COMPLETELY before putting the powdered sugar on top or try to slice them into squares - it will melt the sugar and make a gooey mess if the bars are still warm.

Alright, so there are my Liz Lemon bars. They are completely delicious (I like my lemon bars pretty tart, so keep in mind that this recipe makes pretty tart bars)!

Adapted from

3/4 cups powdered sugar
3/4 cups softened butter
2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt

4 eggs
1 1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup flour
2 tablespoons lemon zest (about 4 lemons)
3/4 to 1 cup lemon juice

1. Preheat oven to 315 F. In a large mixing bowl, combine 3/4 cups powdered sugar, 3/4 cups softened butter, 2 cups flour, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Use a pastry cutter to blend everything together until the mixture resembles coarse bread crumbs.
2. In a greased 9x13 pan, dump crumb mixture and pat it down until it creates an even layer at the bottom of the pan.
3. Bake for 20 minutes in a 315 F oven until the crust looks slightly golden (if the crust is too dark, you will end up with a really crunchy crust.

1. Once the crust is complete, turn the oven temperature up to 350 F.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the 4 eggs, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Add in the 1 1/4 cups sugar, 1 teaspoon baking powder, and 1/4 cup flour. Mix until well combined. (The mixture will be pretty runny - don't worry about this.)
3. Pour the filling mixture over the baked crust. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes, until the filling is set. 
4. Cool bars completely and finish by sprinkling the top with powdered sugar. Cut into 24 bars.

1 comment:

  1. Lemon bars are one of my favorite desserts. These look fabulous.