You may have noticed that I like to bake things that take a long time, and have an excessive number of steps. This is another one of those recipes, and although it will take about 2 hours from start to finish, then another few to cool and refrigerate (preferably overnight), the results are worth the effort and wait! Also, nothing in the process is difficult to do in the slightest, and it’s a fairly forgiving recipe!
You could also reduce prep time by either using bought lemon curd or by making it ahead of time and freezing it.
Without further ado, here are my shortbread, lemon and blueberry cheesecake bars.
Shortbread, lemon and blueberry cheesecake bars
Makes a 9x9 square baking pan.
Note: all quantities work with both American and Australian measuring cup sizes. This isn’t a finicky recipe, so don’t stress too much about any of the parts.
2 C all purpose flour
1 C unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 C powdered sugar, sifted
½ C sugar
½ Tbs vanilla
- Preheat the oven to 160C / 325F and grease a 9x9 inch baking dish.
- Beat butter and sugar on high until light and fluffy, mix in vanilla then stir in flour. If the batter still feels sticky, add more flour until you can handle everything without it sticking to your fingers.
- Press half of dough into based of dish and bake 15-20 minutes, or until edges are golden brown. Wrap and refrigerate remaining dough.
- Remove the shortbread from the oven and allow to cool.
Adapted from Foodess
1 tsp lemon zest
½ cup lemon juice
½ cup sugar
3 large eggs
- Whisk together all the ingredients until smooth, then cook over a medium low heat (stirring constantly) until the curd thickens and can coat the back of a wooden spoon. Strain the curd then refrigerate, covered, until required.
Adapted from Foodess
400g / 14 oz cream cheese, room temperature
½ C sugar
½ C sour cream
1 tsp vanilla extract or paste
- Reduce the oven to 300F/150C. Beat cream cheese and sugar until light and fluffy, add eggs one at a time and beat between each addition.
- Add sour cream and vanilla and mix until combined.
- Pour over biscuit base and dollop with lemon curd, swirling to combine.
- Bake 20-25 min until still very wiggly in the centre but starting to set on the side.
Blueberry pie filing
Adapted from Annies Eats
500g / 18 oz fresh or frozen blueberries, plus a handful extra
1/3 C sugar
2.5 Tbs cornstarch
1 Tbs lemon juice
½ tsp lemon zest
- Combine everything except the extra blueberries, over med-high heat until boiling, about 10 minutes. Stir occasionally, continuing to boil for 2 minutes. The filling will become very thick, this is what you want. Remove from heat and cool.
- Top cheesecake with blueberry filling, and swirl into the cheesecake slightly. Spread out the remaining blueberries and push them into the batter too. They are just so that there is a bit of a textural difference with the blueberries and because I love getting whole berries in desserts. The batter will still be very fluid in the centre at this stage so it won’t be difficult. Crumble over remaining shortbread dough and bake 25-30 minutes at 325 until crumble is golden brown and the cheesecake doesn’t wobble too much in the middle (you will be able to tell when it’s no longer fluid inside). If you are a bit worried about the cheesecake being done, just remember that it will continue to set as it cools, and will continue to cook for a little while after you’ve taken it out of the oven (particularly if you’ve used a glass baking tray).
- Cool COMPLETELY before cutting. Ideally, refrigerate overnight before slicing. The outside pieces will come out a bit messily, but the inside should be easy enough to lift out of the tray.