I have a recipe box -- actually four of them -- that contains untried recipes I've collected over the years from a variety of sources: magazines, newspapers, friends, family, cookbooks and the Internet. Sometimes when I go through the boxes searching for a new recipe to try, I'll discover two copies of the same recipe. The recipes have different names, but the ingredients and method are identical. When I find a recipe that sounded so good I filed it twice, I know I need to try that recipe. This is how the recipe for Quick and Easy Lemon Bars went from my untried recipe box to my tried and true recipe box.
I never had much success making lemon bars. They always turned out dry, even when I made them from a packaged lemon bar mix. That changed once I made the Quick and Easy Lemon Bars. They received rave reviews and requests for the recipe!
Lemon bars are a layered bar cookie consisting of a crust and a lemon topping. Traditionally, the crust is made with flour, butter or margarine and confectioners sugar. A variation is to add flaked coconut or chopped nuts to the crust. The crust is partially baked before the lemon topping is added. The topping usually contains eggs, sugar, lemon juice and a little flour to help it thicken.
To save time, you can substitute packaged ingredients for both the crust and topping. You can use refrigerated sugar cookie dough or a cake mix for the crust. The topping can be made with a package of lemon pudding with additional ingredients added for taste and texture. The recipe for Quick and Easy Lemon Bars relies on packaged ingredients for both the crust and topping.
The pan goes in the oven and in less than 30 minutes you have a batch of lemon bars.