Elderberry-Lemon Shortbread Bars are the perfect blend of sweet and tart. They are wonderful served with afternoon tea or after a special dinner at any time of the year. Make sure to plan ahead when making these bars, as they require time to chill after baking.
2 cups all-purpose flour
½ cup powdered sugar
¾ teaspoon lemon zest, divided
¾ cup cold butter
2 (8 oz) packages cream cheese, softened
¾ cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 T fresh lemon juice
1-9 oz jar Elderberry Jam, Elderberry Ginger Pecan Jam, or Blueberry Elderberry Preserves
Garnishes: sweetened whipped cream, fresh strawberry slices and/or blueberries
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift together flour, powdered sugar and ½ tsp lemon zest in a medium bowl. Cut in butter with a pastry blender (or knife) until crumbly. Press mixture onto bottom of a lightly greased 13×9 inch pan.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 22 minutes or until lightly browned.
- Meanwhile, beat cream cheese and granulated sugar with an electric mixer until smooth. Add eggs, 1 at a time, and beat until just blended after each addition. Stir in fresh lemon juice and remaining ¼ tsp lemon zest, beating well.
- Spread Elderberry Jam/Elderberry Ginger Pecan Jam/Blueberry Elderberry Preserves over shortbread. Pour cream cheese mixture over preserves, spreading to edges. Bake 28 to 32 more minutes or until set. Let cool for 1 hour on a wire rack. Cover and chill 4 to 8 hours.
- Cut the bars into single servings and garnish with fresh strawberries and/or blueberries. Add a small dollop of whipped cream on top, and arrange on a pretty plate to make a beautiful dessert worthy of any event.
Refrigerate leftovers (if you happen to have any left!).