Do not spread this around too far, as I made these a couple of times this year for parties and to take to someone's house. Don't get me wrong, they taste great. As I said in the title, I really do think this is among the best things I have made this year, and certainly the best dessert I make.
It is just so dang easy, and even uses a box mix.
I have tried making these different ways... Tried it with a scratch cake... not as good at all. I tried it with a box cherry cake in place of the lemon. It was fair, but still not the same. It was close when I used an orange cake, but even then, i wish I had used the lemon.
So, Box mix and lemon and it is indeed the best thing I made this year.
And all thanks to Jill at the Dulce Dough blog. I first saw this recipe on her blog a few months ago. Loved it from the start. Beautiful yellow color, mix of textures, with an almost shortbread crust, creamy cheese filling and a very light cake topping. This is one of those very rare recipes when no matter what I tried, this, as Jill posted (click here to see her post) is just about as good as it gets!
The trick is to ignore the directions on the cake box. Only use one egg when you make these. That is the key to the sweet moist texture and small rise of the cake.
OK... with a nod and thanks to Jill who gave me permission to reprint her recipe, here's what I did...
1 Lemon Cake mix (the extra moist kind with pudding built in)
2 eggs, used separately
1/2 cup Oil
1 - 8 ounce package of Cream Cheese
1/3rd cup Sugar
Juice from one Lemon
Zest from one Lemon
- Mix dry cake mix, 1 egg and oil until crumbly; reserve 1 cup
- Press remaining mixture into greased 9X13 or 7X11 inch pan
- Bake for 15 minutes in preheated 350 degree oven
- Meanwhile, beat cream cheese, 1 egg, sugar, juice and zest until smooth
- Spread over baked layer, then sprinkle the reserved crumb mixture over the top.
- Bake for an additional 15 minutes
- Cool completely and cut into bars
I can not brag on these enough. they have the unusual look of something homemade, but all the ease of just opening a box. But, when all is said and done, they taste FABULOUS!!!
Sometimes I sprinkle a little powdered sugar to add a tiny bit of pizzazz, but no matter if you make them a little fatter (the 7X11 inch pan), bling toppings or not, these are my current favorite, and will always deserve a spot in my "Top Five" Desserts!