I love lemon bars, but they are anything but healthy. I decided to make a lightened up version based off Gina’s Honey Lemon Bar recipe from her Skinnytaste blog. I wanted to incorporate my culinary lavender as I knew it would pair well with the lemon and shine through this simple dessert without messing up the consistency or bake. The only downside was the use of so many lemons!
Honey Lemon Bars *adapted from Skinnytaste
For the crust:
- 6 tbsp white whole wheat flour (I used whole wheat)
- 6 tbsp all purpose flour
- 1/3 cup light brown sugar (not packed)
- 3 tbsp cornstarch
- 2 tsp grated lemon zest
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- 4 tbsp unsalted butter, cut into bits and chilled
- 1 tbsp fat free Greek yogurt
For the filling:
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1 large egg white, lightly beaten
- 2 tbsp white whole wheat flour
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tsp grated lemon zest
- 5 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 tbsp powdered sugar, for dusting on top
Preheat the oven to 350° F.
Prepare an 8-inch square pan by lightly spraying the inside of the pan with baking spray before lining it with 2 long sheets of aluminum foil folded to fit inside and placed perpendicular to each other in the pan. This is so you can get the bars out after they are cooked, so don’t skip this step.
Simmer honey with 1T of culinary lavender for 30 minutes before straining solids.
Cut the sheets long enough to hang over the sides to use as handles to lift out the baked lemon bars before cutting into squares. Spray the inside of the foil lined pan with baking spray.
For the crust: In a food processor combine the flours, brown sugar, cornstarch, lemon zest, baking powder and salt and process until well combined. Add the butter and yogurt to the flour mixture at once and pulse at least a dozen times before turning out into the prepared pan and pressing into an even layer.
Bake until evenly browned about 20-22 minutes. Cool the crust on a metal rack for at least 15 – 20 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F.
Prepare the filling by whisking together the eggs, honey, lemon zest, flour and the salt in a medium bowl. Stir in the lemon juice and pour over the cooled crust. Bake until filling is set, about 22 minutes. Cool completely before lifting the bars out of the pan with the foil. Cut into 9 squares and dust with confectioners sugar. *Note be prepared for the sugar to “disappear” if refrigerated overnight. Do not dust until bars are cooled and are ready to be served.