Blood Orange Bars


I have a love-hate relationship with citrus. I don’t like navel oranges but enjoy clementines. Lemon is probably my favorite flavor. Limes are meh, and I’m not a fan of lemon lime pop. Once in awhile I’ll crave grapefruit. But when I see blood oranges? I go crazy. If a grapefruit and an orange had a baby, this would be it. Sometimes I’ll eat it as fruit; other times I bake things. I love lemon bars, so I knew I’d love these blood orange bars even more.

The first time I had a blood orange was down in the Bahamas. I was on a trip with the geology department, so we were on a pretty remote island. We found some blood orange trees, so we had a snack. I didn’t think much about them until I saw them during my first trip to Whole Foods.

Blood oranges are messy. Once you cut and juice them, you may be questioned about the murder scene in your kitchen. The juice does stain, so wear an apron and don’t expect clean hands.

I found the recipe online at Eating Out Loud. I was expecting the citrus layer to come out a little darker, but the taste was melt-in-your-mouth amazing. Wish I had some right now with this dreary weather! The lime is there to help cut the bitterness of the orange. I think next time I’m going to try lemon instead.

Recipe updated 02-08-13 after some testing and reader feedback

Yields 16

Blood Orange Bars
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3/4 cups unsalted butter
1/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups flour
pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 eggs
2/3 cup juice, mostly blood orange with some lime
2 Tablespoons zest, mostly blood orange with some lime
2/3 cup flour
1-2 Tablespoons powdered sugar


    For the base:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Have a 9x9 pan ready.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until light and creamy. Gradually beat in the flour and salt. Press the mixture into the bottom of the pan. Bake for 20 minutes or until lightly golden. Set aside to cool. If you don’t let the crust cool, the filling will melt into it.
  3. For the filling:
  4. Whisk the sugar and eggs until blended, then add juice, zest, and flour. Return to the oven and bake 30-35 minutes or until set. Allow to cool. Before serving, sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Source: Eating Out Loud

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