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Meyer Lemon & White Chocolate Blondies

Meyer Lemon & White Chocolate Blondies
Blondies are bar cookies that are similar in texture to brownies – dense and chewy – but don’t use cocoa powder or chocolate in the same way that brownies do. In fact, many of them don’t use chocolate at all. These Meyer Lemon & White Chocolate Blondies do use chocolate and come so close to the texture of “traditional” brownies that I was tempted to label them that way. Whatever you call them, they’re a bright, fresh twist on most blondie (or brownie) recipes and an easy-to-make treat that citrus-lovers are sure to enjoy.

The bars are chewy and flavorful, though a crisp edge develops around the bars where the blondies come into contact with the pan. You’ll taste a strong lemon flavor, as well as a rich, creaminess from the white chocolate. You won’t directly taste the white chocolate that is melted into the batter because its really melds into the batter, though you will taste the white chocolate chips that are scattered throughout the batter and contrast well with the zesty lemon. The lemon comes from meyer lemons, which are sweeter and less acidic than other lemons, but still have a tremendous lemon flavor.

These blondies taste even better the day after they are baked, as the white chocolate and lemon flavors meld together and you get even more lemon flavor in every bite. If you don’t have meyer lemons available – and you can find them at many markets, as well as at farmers markets, because they grow year-round – you can use regular lemon zest. The bars will still be delicious, but the flavor will be slightly brighter than bars made with meyer lemons. The bars keep well for several days after baking when stored in an airtight container.

Meyer Lemon & White Chocolate Blondies
1/2 cup butter
2 oz white chocolate, chopped
1 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 large egg
1 tbsp meyer lemon zest (from 1 large lemons)
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup white chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8×8-inch baking pan with aluminum foil and lightly grease.
In a medium, microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter on high heat. When butter is completely melted, add in chopped white chocolate and allow it to melt. Stir until smooth and allow to cool slightly.
In a large bowl, whisk together sugar and egg until well-combined. Beat in salt and lemon zest until well combined. Stir in chocolate mixture.
Stir in flour and mix until no streaks of dry ingredients remain. Fold in white chocolate until no streaks of flour remain.
Transfer batter – batter will be thick – to prepared baking dish and spread into an even layer.
Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until bars are set and light golden.
Cool completely in the pan before slicing.

Makes 16.

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