Blueberry Streusel Bars with Lemon-Cream Filling
  • • 8 ounces (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened; more for the pan
  • • 13 1/2 ounces (3 cups) all purpose flour
  • • 1 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick oats)
  • • 1 1/3 cups packed light brown sugar
  • • 1 teaspoon salt
  • • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • • 1 large egg, separated
  • • 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • • 2 1/2 cups room-temperature blueberries (about 13 ounces), washed and drained on paper towels
  1. Position rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9×13 inch metal baking pan with foil, leaving a 1-inch overhang on the ends. Lightly butter the bottom and sides of the foil.
  2. In a large bowl, combine flour, oats, sugar, salt, and baking powder. Using your fingers, blend the butter completely into the flour mixture. Transfer 2 cups of crumb mixture to another bowl and reserve for topping. Blend the egg white into the remaining crumbs and press the mixture into the bottom of the pan to form a level crust. Tamp it with the bottom of a measuring cup to even it out. Bake the crust until it starts to form a dry top, 10 to 12 minutes.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk the sweetened condensed milk, lemon juice, lemon zest, and egg yolk. Let stand for 5 minutes; it will begin to thicken.
  4. Sprinkle the blueberries evenly over the hot crust, then drop spoonfuls of the lemon mixture over the blueberries. Spread gently with a spatula to distribute a little more evenly, but take care not to crush the berries. The lemon mixture need not be perfectly evenly spread. Bake until the lemon mixture just begins to form a shiny skin, 7 to 8 minutes.
  5. Sprinkle the reserved topping over the lemon-blueberry layer, pressing the streusel between your fingers into small lumps as you sprinkle. Bake until the filling is bubbling at the edges and the topping is brown, 25 to 30 minutes.
  6. Let the bars cool in the pan on a rack until just warm, about an hour. Carefully lift them out of the pan using the foil overhang and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Remove the foil and cut into 24 bars when cool. The bars may be stored at room temperature for a few hours, but should otherwise be kept in the refrigerator.
from Fine Cooking magazine Issue #93 (June/July 2008)