Thursday, September 1, 2011

Guest Recipe - Lemon Streusel Bars from That Skinny Chick Can Bake!!!

This week's guest recipe of Lemon Streusel Bars is from Liz from That Skinny Chick Can Bake!!! And that's no exaggeration! I've been a reader of Liz's food blog for several months, and she is nothing short of a miracle worker. She writes quality blog posts of drool-worthy recipes and has some beautiful photography, and manages to make a post almost every day! I call that truly inspired!

Continuing with the lemon theme this week, this recipe worked out perfectly. I was looking to bake a dessert instead of a dinner for a guest recipe (I do dinners for my own posts all the time..) and something not chocolate. I always do chocolate...and I stink at cakes. I was also looking to do something a bit challenging, or at least, different. As I was scrolling through my Foodbuzz recipe archives, the word Streusel stood out and my decision was made.

This recipe is only complicated because you're working with three different elements - the crust, the filling, and the streusel. For this first part, I'm doing the crust. So far, I have flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt mixed together in a bowl. I'm cutting a stick of butter into small pieces that I'm going to infuse into the flour mixture using my fingers.

Work the butter pieces into the flour by pinching the flour into the butter. It's kind of weird, you smoosh (smush?) the butter between your fingers with a little flour. It feels greasy, but your fingers come away clean. I tried using the 2 knife method (like for pie crust) but it didn't work as well...get yer hands dirty!

When all of the butter is worked in add two eggs and incorporate it in with a fork.

Here's my dough after the eggs have been mixed in.

 Here's the part I always have trouble with. I've turned the dough out onto a floured surface. Okay..it's not this part I have trouble with.

I've condensed the dough into somewhat of a ball. I always figure with crusts that for a flakier crust I don't want to work it too much. Okay...this is also not the part I have trouble with.

Roll the dough out into a 12x16 rectangle. Here is where the trouble starts. As advised by my wife, do not roll back and forth - roll one way. Rolling is challenging for me because I don't have a practiced hand. Where I had trouble here was peeling the dough up off the counter. Sure, there was plenty of flour, but I should have rolled on top of wax paper or parchment for easy peel-up and transfer to a 9x13 pan.

I did manage to peel it up in decent shape (with some help). I had to almost completely reshape the dough into the pan. I guess this is what separates someone like Liz from a Noob like me. :) Notice the pan has foil in it and that has cooking spray. You'll want to weigh this down with parchment and dry beans or something. The crust gets baked with the weights for 10 minutes at 350 and then an additional 5 minutes without the weights.

No worries about the details, you can get the recipe from Liz's blog.

While the crust is baking, I'm starting the topping recipe. Basically flour, baking powder, and sugar mix together in a bowl. Add a stick of melted butter and stir together.

The mixture should be nice and crumby (crummy?).

The crust comes out of the oven after 15 minutes freeing your oven for the crumb topping.

Spread your crumb topping out over a baking sheet covered with parchment and bake it at 350 for 15-20. I had to go the full 20 to get a nice golden brown. Let the crust cool.

 In the meantime, you have about 20 minutes to prepare the lemon filling. Zest a lemon and then squeeze the juice out of it. You'll need about a 1/4 cup of lemon juice, so be sure to have extra lemons or juice from a bottle (like I did) to top off your measurement.

2 eggs and zest goes in one bowl - mix it up.

Lemon juice and sugar in the other bowl. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Taste it!

Combining eggs into sugar mix I decided was easier than combining sugar mix into eggs. Whisk this up really well.

When your crust is cool you can pour the filling into it. When your crumb topping comes out of the oven the filled crust can be baked at 350 for 15-20 minutes ( I had to go 20).

The crumb topping should be nice and golden brown. Break it up into smaller pieces if you need to. When the filling is finished baking (it'll be thick jelly-like) spread the crumbs out over the top and bake the whole thing for about 5 minutes at 350.

Everything will come out nicely and you'll have a beautiful Streusel. Let it cool before you dig into it. That's always the hard part.

If you love lemons, you're going to love this. If you love pie, you're going to love this. If you love butter and sugar, you're going to love this.  Let's face it, if you love breathing air, you're going to love this. I had a cup of Earl Grey tea with mine and they went perfectly together.

Thanks to Jen (my wife) for taking all of the pictures during the baking process so I could have free hands and concentrate on what I was doing. Be sure to check out the links to her jewelry and embroidery - she's very talented even though she'll deny it up and down.

Special thanks to Liz for making awesome food every day and sharing her creations with all of us. Be sure to check out That Skinny Chick Can Bake!!! especially if you've never been there before.

23 comments:

  1. Oh, wow, I'm so honored you featured one of the recipes from my blog!! You have made my day. Your bars look perfect...it may be time for me to whip up some more :) Thanks so much, Peter and Jen!

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  2. You're welcome!

    I think my Streusel could have been crumbled a little smaller, but it turned out better than expected :D

    Thanks for stopping by and for the comment. :)

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  3. Love Liz!! I have tried a few of her recipes, and they are all great! These were something I was eyeing, glad to see you mad them!

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  4. Lizzy is one of my very favorites! The Lemon bars look amazing and the step-by-steps are terrific!

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  5. Yum, these lemon bars look great!

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  6. This one is a winner in my book-I like a good ratio of crumbles to filling! Nice of you to feature this one, great choice.

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  7. Oh wow, this is amazing! Nicely done...really pretty

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  8. I also adore Lizzy's blog and recipes. Your take on her lemon bars turned out perfect. Lovely photographs and tips. Pie crust is always hard for me too.

    Thanks for your comment and I'm sorry for your loss too.

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  9. What a wonderful recipe by Lizzy!! These bars look so tasty!

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  10. Lizzy is the best! I love this recipe of hers, and that you featured it here. So awesome! The bars look fantastic, you did a great job!

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  11. I adore Liz's blog am glad to have found yours through her guest post. These look amazing!!!!!

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  12. I love Lizzy's blog and couldn't agree with you more: she is a miracle worker since posting about every day is nothing short of being WonderWoman! And this streusely lemon bar with your Earl Grey does look so wonderfully tempting. Beautiful photography! Bravo on a super guest post.

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  13. Thank you all for your wonderful comments :D

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  14. This sounds delicious, I love Liz's recipes and your version of her lemon streusel bars look amazing. I love anything with streusel!

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  15. Lizzy is one of my alltime favourite bloggers, so I was guaranteed to love this!

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  16. I love lemon bars...but the streusel topping is a GREAT touch! And I agree! Liz has an amazing site! : )

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  17. What a nice tribute to a fellow blogger! :)

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  18. this looks delicious! I'm with you, anything with streusel, I love it!

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  19. Mhhh these look so great! I like how you broke down the steps. I really should add these to my lemon repertoire. :))
    Cheers,
    Tobias

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  20. Oh yea....these would hit the spot. All that glorious lemon flavor.

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  21. Love streusel, lemon and a buttery crust. Win/Win for me!

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  22. I tried this recipe out last night.recette brouillade d oeufs This really is one of the best lemon bar recipes

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for checking it out, Cody. I'm glad you enjoyed them. :)

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