raspberry lemon bars

Ok everyone, here it is!  The recipe for raspberry lemon bars!

Now, this is not my original recipe...  I found it here on Tasty Kitchen.com.  And then I found out that my great-aunt used this exact same recipe for years!  So, I'm going to claim it as a family recipe.  Because I want to and I can.  ;o)

I did (of course) change things a little bit.  But not much, and I think the little adjustments made a huge difference!!  First of all, I took away about 2 tablespoons of the lemon juice (and I love lemon!  I just think it was a little over the top against the berries!) and I also doubled (or sometimes even tripled!) the berries.

I have also made these with blueberries, and they would be great with strawberries too!  Personally, next time I think I will do a mix of raspberries/blueberries.  Oh wait, we have blackberries coming soon, so scratch that...  I will probably make blackberry lemon bars next!!

Oh and here's a few tips:  First, always zest your lemons before you juice them.  It makes things much easier!  (and you can always freeze the zest for later use...  the zest of one lemon = about 1 packed teaspoon.)  Also, please please PLEASE don't ever make this recipe with bottled lemon juice!  It just won't even be worth it and will be a waste of perfectly good berries!!  Thank you!

Raspberry Lemon Bars Recipe

1 sleeve graham crackers, crushed (about 1 1/2 cups crumbs)
6 tablespoons butter, melted
1/4 cup sugar
zest of one lemon
2 egg yolks
1 (14 oz.) can sweetened condensed milk
juice of 3 large lemons (about 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons juice)
zest of one lemon
3 cups fresh berries (raspberries, blueberries, etc.)

Preheat the oven to 350ºF.  Grease an 8" or 9" square baking dish.

In a medium bowl, stir together the graham cracker crumbs, butter and lemon zest.  Press firmly into the bottom of the prepared baking dish and bake for 10 minutes.  Let cool completely while you prepare the filling.

In a large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and condensed milk until blended.  Whisk in the lemon juice and zest and continue to whisk for a few minutes until the mixture thickens a bit (it will feel lighter as you stir).  Very gently fold in your berries and pour the filling into the cooled crust.

Bake for 15 minutes, until the filling is just set, and cool to room temperature before placing in the fridge to chill for at least an hour before serving.

This dessert is prettiest the first day, but keeps well and tastes just as good the second and third day!  (If there is any left that long, that is!)  :o)

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