Hello friends! We have made it to our 50th bake from Claire Saffitz’s Dessert Person—can you believe it?! We are just a couple of bakes away from hitting the halfway point of this project, which is truly mind-blowing. This week, we bring you another recipe from the Bars & Cookies chapter, the Minty Lime Bars.
These were quite easy to make, had really good flavours. They could have used more mint but were really tart from the lime, sometimes maybe a little too much. 4 stars!
I have to admit, I was a little apprehensive going into this bake. I love anything citrus, and lime is one of my favourite flavours, but 1) it’s almost Christmas and this bake just doesn’t seem to be the vibe, 2) I’d heard from several fellow bakers that the curd topping was almost impossible to get set properly, 3) I’d also heard the mint part of this bake (found in the shortbread base) was a bit lackluster. So overall, the bar was pretty low.
Luckily, I was so pleasantly surprised with how these turned out! The process was relatively simple and very different from the other bakes in this chapter so far, which was fun. The whole thing starts with the shortbread base. You start by zesting 4 limes and blending with granulated sugar until fragrant (this smelled amazing!). Then flour, baking powder, and a pinch of salt are mixed in, along with the chopped mint, before finally adding slices of cold butter and mixing with your hands until the whole thing is well combined and sticks together.
Since I’d read that the lime really overpowers the mint in this recipe, and really wanting the mint flavour to come through, I went heavy on this ingredient and probably doubled the amount that the book called for. Spoiler alert: this was a good call. The mint was still very subtle but definitely came through nicely!
The shortbread mixture is spread into the baking pan and then bakes for about 25 minutes until browned. While this cooled, I prepped my curd. This comes together with a blend of freshly squeezed lime juice, fresh lemon juice (about ¾ cup of the lime and ¼ cup of the lemon), 4 egg yolks and one whole egg, granulated sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Whisking the various components of the curd, gradually heating, and watching it thicken was super satisfying.
The hot curd gets poured over the cooled shortbread, and then the whole thing goes back in the oven for about 35 minutes. I gave it the full bake time and found that this achieved the puffed up edges that Claire says to look for, with just a slight wobble in the center. I veered on less wobble vs. more given all of the reported issues with setting. They looked fairly firm coming out of the oven, and once they’d fully cooled at room temp and sat in the fridge overnight, they were perfect!
I sliced them up the next morning and did a few drop-offs to my neighbours. These were SUPER tart and fresh. I loved how the lime and mint flavours played with each other, and the texture combination of the crispy, buttery shortbread and the smooth curd was fantastic. I will definitely make these again this summer, maybe served with a side of tequila! This was a 4.5 star bake for me!
Next week, we’ll be heading back to the Loaf Cakes and Single Layer Cakes chapter and finally baking the Spiced Persimmon Loaf. See you then!