Lemon is one of my all time favorite ingredients. It is fantastic in salads, adds the perfect tang to chicken, and is really perfect in desserts.
With that said, if I see one more lemon bar on a shortbread crusted dusted with powdered sugar and stacked with parchment paper in between each layer, I might lose it.
Not that they aren’t delicious. And adorable. But that dessert has been done, over and over again, in the blog world. There just really isn’t that much variation needed with a lemon bar. The recipe is good just as it is.
So that left me with a little dilemma last night when I came home and felt the urge to bake something “lemony.” I wanted to do some kind of lemon bar that I could share, but it had to be something slightly different. Enter the pink lady bar. With all of this John Travolta talk in the news, Grease has been on my mind.
Now adding strawberry to a lemon bar isn’t exactly an earth shattering idea, but it is a good one. So is making the crust a modified oatmeal brown sugar cookie.
Pink Lady Bars
For the crust
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup flour
1 cup quick oats
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla
For the topping
1 cup white sugar
1/4 cup flour
Juice from two lemons
Zest from one lemon
8 strawberries, pureed
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a stand mixer, combine butter and brown sugar. Mix until creamy. Add in flour, oatmeal, salt, and baking powder. Once combined, mix in vanilla. Press into the bottom of a well-greased 9×13 pan. Bake for ten minutes.
While the crust is baking, combine sugar and flour in the stand mixer. Mix together. Add in eggs, one at a time, mixing after the addition of each egg. Once eggs have been incorporated, add in lemon juice, zest, and strawberries. Mix together. Pour batter into the hot crust.
Bake for 20 minutes.
And if you are feeling particularly lazy, you know what would work really well instead of making your own crust? Buying the premade sugar cookie dough, crumbling it up, and pressing it tightly into the bottom of the pan. I actually think that would be really delicious. You would probably only need to pre-cook that for about 5 minutes before adding the filling.
Simple bars, featuring summer flavors… what’s not to love? I personally think that they would be divine served at a wedding or baby shower.
On a non-food related note, we booked our honeymoon today! After so much research and reading thousands of reviews, we’ve decided on a lovely little place in Belize. I cannot wait.