I have never had a bakewell tart before and I'm not sure what it's supposed to taste like. As far as tarts go though, this is delicious. The shortcrust pastry is really tasty, like a shortbread cookie. I made little individual tarts with many different types of fillings. I made some with blueberry jelly, strawberry jam and also with some semi-sweet chocolate. My favorite was the blueberry jelly, the combination of the blueberry and almond go very well together. What a great challenge!! Hopefully one day I will make it to England to try a real bakewell tart. =P
Inspirations and References: Allan Davidson, Tamasin Day Lewis, Anton Edelmann, Jane Grigson, Nigella Lawson and Jamie Oliver
Makes one 23cm (9” tart)
One quantity sweet shortcrust pastry (recipe follows)
250ml (1cup (8 US fl. oz)) jam or curd, warmed for spreadability
One quantity frangipane (recipe follows)
One handful blanched, flaked almonds
2. Preheat oven to 200C/400F.
3. Remove shell from freezer, spread as even a layer as you can of jam onto the pastry base. Top with frangipane, spreading to cover the entire surface of the tart. Smooth the top and pop into the oven for 30 minutes. Five minutes before the tart is done, the top will be poofy and brownish. Remove from oven and strew flaked almonds on top and return to the heat for the last five minutes of baking.
4. The finished tart will have a golden crust and the frangipane will be tanned, poofy and a bit spongy-looking. Remove from the oven and cool on the counter. Serve warm, with crème fraîche, whipped cream or custard sauce if you wish.
225g (8oz) all purpose flour
30g (1oz) sugar
2.5ml (1/2 tsp) salt
110g (4oz) unsalted butter, cold (frozen is better)
2 (2) egg yolks
2.5ml (1/2 tsp) almond extract (optional)
15-30ml (1-2 Tbsp) cold water
2. Lightly beat the egg yolks with the almond extract (if using) and quickly mix into the flour mixture. Keep mixing while dribbling in the water, only adding enough to form a cohesive and slightly sticky dough.
3. Form the dough into a disc, wrap in cling and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
125g (4.5oz) unsalted butter, softened
125g (4.5oz) icing sugar
3 (3) eggs
2.5ml (1/2 tsp) almond extract
125g (4.5oz) ground almonds
30g (1oz) all purpose flour