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Rhubarb Custard Bars

I love rhubarb season. I have already roasted it, turned it into preserves, and gobbled it up as strawberry rhubarb crisp. Today, I wanted something cool and creamy; rhubarb custard bars are perfect. The smooth, creamy custard contrasts with the sharp tang of the rhubarb and sits above a decadent buttery shortbread; in other words, the best springtime bar dessert I know!

This bar whips together in a snap. The shortbread crust is just a matter of mixing the ingredients into a soft dough and pressing it into the pan; no cutting in cold butter, no kneading, no resting or refrigeration. While the cookie base is cooking, the filling comes together just as easily; mix a few ingredients together, pour it into the baked crust, and let it bake. The hardest part of this recipe is waiting for the bars to cool before slicing into them.

These are delicious served as they are, but if you want to improve their presentation as you serve them, dollop a bit of freshly whipped cream on top. Store in the fridge, but don’t be surprised if you find yourself making several trips to the kitchen during the day to slice yourself little bites. Enjoy!

2 sticks melted butter
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
2 cups all-purpose flour

2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
3 eggs and 1 egg yolk
1 cup heavy whipping cream
6 cups chopped fresh rhubarb

Preheat your oven to 350 degree F. Prepare a 9 by 13 pan with baking spray.

Mix together the crust ingredients together into a soft dough. Press into the prepared pan. Bake for 10 to 14 minutes until the crust is lightly golden brown.

Meanwhile, max the filling. Combine the sugar and flour together with a whisk. Break in the eggs and add the vanilla bean paste, mixing well after each egg is added. Pour in the heavy whipping cream and mix well until the custard is smooth. Fold in the rhubarb. Pour into the crust and bake for 40 to 45 minutes until the custard is just set. Remove from the oven and set on a wire rack to cool to room temperature, then refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.



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