rants & recipes

New Fashioned Lemon Bars

Posted by ataraktos on 2008-08-23

I've made these once - they were a little complicated but really very good, especially if you must have lemon bars but don't want the gelatin!


  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (2-3 lemons, zest from 2)
  • 3 tbsp agar flakes
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 2 tsp arrowroot powder
  • 1 cup reduced-fat coconut milk
  • Grated zest from 2 lemons
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric, optional
  • Powdered sugar, optional


  1. Combine lemon juice and agar flakes in 2-cup heatproof measuring cup (or small nonreactive saucepan) and set aside until agar softens slightly, at least 15 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease 8 by 8-inch baking pan.
  3. Whisk flour and 1/4-cup granulated cane juice together in medium bowl.
  4. Add margarine in spoonfuls and cut in with pastry cutter or two knives until mixture resembles small crumbs. (This can also be done in a food processor or a standing mixer with the paddle attachment.) Do not let mixture come together and form a cohesive dough.
  5. Scrape crust mixture into prepared pan and shake gently to distribute evenly. Press crumbs down gently with fingertips.
  6. Bake until dry-looking on top and lightlybrowned at edges, about 12 minutes.
  7. Let cool.
  8. Place lemon juice mixture in microwave and cook on high for 1 minute.
  9. Remove from microwave and stir. Continue cooking at 30-second intervals, stirring well each time, until flakes are dissolved, about 2 minutes. (Or bring lemon juice mixture to a boil over medium-low heat and simmer, whisking often, until agar dissolves, about 10 minutes.)
  10. Combine remaining 3/4 cup granulated cane juice and arrowroot in small saucepan.
  11. Add coconut milk and stir to blend.
  12. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
  13. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 minute.
  14. Remove pan from heat and add lemon juice mixture and lemon zest.
  15. If using turmeric, dissolve it in 1 tablespoon water and add up to 1 teaspoon of this mixture to lemon filling to achieve the desired color.
  16. Pour lemon filling onto slightly cooled crust and let set at room temperature until firm, about 1 hour.
  17. Pan can be covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated for several days. Bring to room temperature before serving.
  18. Dust with powdered sugar if desired and slice into bars.


  • Recipe from vegsource.com