Saturday, May 21, 2005

Ginger-Lemon Bars

Ginger-Lemon Bars (Adapted from Nick Malgieri)

For the dough

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
16 tablespoons (2 sticks or 1 cup) unsalted butter
1 large egg
1/4 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons freshly grated lemon zest

For the glaze

2 cups confectioners’ sugar
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
water, if needed to thin

To prepare the dough

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, ginger, baking powder and salt.

In a small saucepan, add butter and place over medium heat - cook just until melted. Immediately pour into the dry ingredients, mixing until the dough is combined. Mix in the egg, crystallized ginger, honey and zest, beating vigorously to make a smooth dough.

Scoop the dough into a 9" x 13" baking pan coated with nonstick spray, pressing it over the bottom to form an even layer. Place pan into the oven and bake until the top is firm to the touch and lightly golden, about 20 to 25 minutes.

To prepare the glaze

Meanwhile, as the bars bake, place confectioners' sugar and lemon juice in a medium bowl, stirring until smooth. If the glaze seems too thick to spread, stir in 1/2 teaspoon water at a time, until it becomes a spreadable consistency.

When the bars are done, remove the pan from the oven and place a cutting board directly on top of the pan - carefully invert the hot bars onto the board. Lift the pan away and immediately pour glaze over the bars, spreading it evenly on top. Cut into 2" bars to serve.

Makes about 24 bars.

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