When Life Gives You Lemons…

31 May

…make lemon bars. Or in my case today, VEGAN lemon bars.

One of my M.O.s before I leave on vacation or extended time away from home is to clean out my fridge of any perishables.  This weekend, I’ll be taking off for a short visit back home so today, I zeroed in on the three slightly withered lemons that were lurking in my fridge. While a nice lemon bundt cake would’ve been my first idea for using the lemons — plus its freezable for enjoyment when I get back — I had to come up with something vegan since my friends and I are doing a hardcore, 100% vegan eating challenge for the next two weeks. Fortunately, I’d borrowed the cookbook The Joy of Vegan Baking from the library and in it was a recipe for vegan lemon bars I just had to try.

Let me state for the record that I love to bake and consider it a borderline travesty to use any ingredients other than real butter, real eggs and real dairy products. However, I’m also trying to be more mindful about the food I feed my body, which also goes back to my two-week, 100% vegan eating challenge.

The recipe for vegan lemon bars included Earth Balance butter substitute for the crust and the “custard” was made from silken tofu. The finished product was very lemony (thanks to 1/3 cup of lemon juice and the zest of two lemons), but I do miss that extra something that only real animal products can give. I do wonder: if I had never tasted a “real” lemon bar would I know the difference? The texture was similar if not the same as a regular lemon bar, but just lacked that extra layer of buttery flavor.

I would probably make these again, but I can’t wait to try some of the other recipes in the cookbook.

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