Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Bakewell Tarts

I loooove Bakewell tart. I mean, really, love it. To the level of, if-I-had-to-only-eat-one-thing-for-all-eternity-it-would-be-Bakewell-tart, kind of love.

I love almonds. I love jam. I love cake. I love pastry. It contains almost all of the things I love, and nothing at all that I don't.

I made a Bakewell tart once before, quite a while ago. And it was pretty good. And I decided it had been too long since I'd eaten Bakewell tart. So I decided to make more Bakewell tart. And also keep on saying Bakewell tart.

But of course, you know me. Last time I made it, I used a recipe. And I certainly wasn't going to do that this time around. I looked up the recipe I'd used when I made it last, and my hopes were confirmed. That very recipe could be broken into its component parts and reduced to ratios. My heart was warmed. My method of cooking is starting to work. It really does apply to recipes more complex than the plain versions of everything! Maybe - just maybe - even the most horrifically complicated and detailed recipe will actually turn out to be nothing more than a sponge cake ratio with some additions and substitutions. I live in hope.

So, no prizes for guessing which ratios it consists of? I'll give you a hint - one of them is pastry. Here's another hint - the other one's pound cake. That was all of the hints, actually. That's pretty much all there is to it.
  • First, make some pastry. This is the link to the main pastry post. If you want to make a full-sized tart, a batch from about 150g of flour will probably be alright. If you're doing mini tarts like mine, 100g will most likely be enough. Chill and rest it as per normal, and then roll it out. The thickness will depend on how wide you want it to be, and your general preferences, but a few millimetres is a rough estimate. Cut it into shape (or shapes) and lay it into whatever cases you're using.
  • Now it's blind baking time. Line the cases with paper and fill with whatever weights you've got. Cook for 10 minutes or so, until just starting to go golden.

  • While they're cooking, you can start making the pound cake. Here is the main post about cake. The only difference with the pound cake for Bakewell tart is that instead of flour, you use an equal weight of ground almonds. These take the place of the flour to form the structure of the cake, but giving it a delicious almond flavour at the same time. So you can just use the exact method for pound cake (that's the one where you cream the butter and sugar, rather than beat the sugar and eggs), except do exactly what you would do with flour, with ground almonds instead.
  • When your pastry has finished blind baking, get yourself some jam. Officially, you should use raspberry. I used strawberry because it was all I had, but you can use whatever you like really. Spoon some jam into the bottom of the pastry/ies. Again, the amount is mostly up to you (within reason). Spread it around fairly evenly, and then it's time for the cake bit.

  • Spoon the cake mixture into the container/s. Spread it fairly flat, and it's time to bake. If you like, sprinkle some flaked almond on the top. Then bake at something around 180C. The cooking time will depend on the size of your cakes, but check it fairly regularly using the toothpick test and you should be fine. It's done when a toothpick stuck in the middle comes out clean.
  • And you're finished! Divine Bakewell tart, at your service.

PS - One day I am going to start icing things, I promise. It's just that I know so little about it at the moment it'll probably take me a while to pluck up the courage to actually get started. In the mean time, here's more Bakewell tarts:

1 comment:

  1. Why this post hasn't got a million comments already is beyond me. Bakewell tart is just heaven in pastry form. You've gained yourself a follower purely on the basis of that gooey almondy goodness. Be a love and pop one in the post to me? :p