Monday, June 13, 2011

Lemon Cheesecake Bars

I still have some lemon juice in the freezer so I thought I would make a dessert with them. I LOVE cheesecake but I never make it because my oldest daughter is allergic to dairy and I just don't keep cream cheese on hand anymore. It was fun figuring out these bars. They are cheese cake on the bottom and lemon bars on the top with a shortbread cookie crust...YUM!! I did do some research on how to make lemon bars (my sister was always the Lemon Bar maker in the family, I had never made them before yesterday!!) but I got the general idea and started baking! That is what I tend to do. If I don't know how to make something I study several recipes/variations. I want to figure out the chemical reactions with the different ingredients, the order ingredients are added and the methodology used in preparing the food. Like with quick breads, I loved learning about the baking powder/baking soda reactions and the acids used as well as the different methods (biscuit, cream, or muffin) used in making the quick breads. It's the process I love, figuring out why recipes are written the way they are... I know it's a little nerdy but hey, that's me!!

Well back to the yumminess at hand... The Lemon cheesecake bars!!!

LEMON CHEESECAKE BARS

Crust-

2 cups flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar
3/4 cup cold butter cubed
1/2 tsp salt
4 tablespoons ice cold water

In a food processer combine flour, sugar, and salt. Pulse a few times to mix ingredients together. add the butter and pulse until the butter is cut into the flour mixture and it looks like Bisquick/fine crumbs. Turn the food processor to 1 and while it is running add the water 1 tablespoon at a time. The dough will turn into little balls about the size of a pea. dump out the dough into a 9x13 pan and press down to form the crust. Bake at 350 for 20 mins or until light brown

Cheesecake layer

16 oz cream cheese (two boxes), softened
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp lemon juice

combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl  and beat with egg beaters until smooth. Pour on top of crust and bake at 350 for 15 mins. Remove from oven.

Lemon layer

4 eggs
1/3 cup lemon juice
2 cups sugar
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1.2 cup flour

In a small bowl combine flour and baking powder, set aside. In the food processor mix the eggs and lemon juice and sugar and salt. while food processor is running add the flour mixture. Pour lemon layer on top of cheesecake layer and bake at 350 for 25 mins or until the lemon layer is set and a knife come out clean.

These are amazing!!

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