Bakewell Tart

Living on this grey and green isle has exposed me to the most incredible array of things, not least of which has been to the humble Bakewell tart. It is a traditional English confection which is completely delicious and comes in the form of a rich tart or pudding made from pastry, jam and an eggy almond filling. I love the simplicity of this tart and the satisfaction it delivers is well worth making pastry for. Strawberry jam can be used but this recipe uses raspberry jam for tartness and also calls for lemon zest to lift the richness of the frangipane filling. There are varying recipes, with fillings that are more sponge like and others that are custardy. This once is a luscious affair. It keeps really well for a few days and makes the best tea time treat. It's hard not to smile....

Recipe (Olive Magazine)

125g plain flour
75g unsalted butter
25g castor sugar
1 egg yolk
2-3 tbsp cold water

Put all the dry ingredients in a food processor and blitz until the mix resembles fine bread crumbs. Add the egg yolk and a tablespoon of water, pulse again and add more water if necessary until the dough just comes together. Don't over process it, as this will result in tough pastry. Knead lightly and press down into a thick disc. Cover with cling film and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Once chilled, roll out to about 5mm thick and line a 20cm flan tin. Return to the fridge for a further 30 minutes before baking.

150g butter, softened
150g castor sugar
150g ground almonds
3 eggs and 1 egg yolk, beaten
zest of a lemon
2-3 tbsp raspberry jam
1 tbsp flaked almonds

Preheat oven to 190C. Line the pastry case with baking paper and fill with baking beans or dried beans. Bake blind for 15-20 minutes, remove paper and beans, return to the oven and bake for a further 10 minutes until the base is cooked through and golden. Remove from the oven and reduce temperature to 180C. To make the filling: cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, add egg very gradually to avoid mixture splitting, beating well after each addition. Fold in almonds and lemon zest. Spread jam over the base of the pastry case. If you have a piping bag, fill it with the almond frangipane and pipe the mixture evenly over the jam. Smooth top with a knife. If you don't have a piping bag, cover the jam very carefully with the almond frangipane to avoid the jam from moving towards the sides. Bake for 15-20 minutes and then sprinkle with the flaked almonds. Return to the oven and bake for a further 15-20 minutes until golden and set. Allow to cool before serving.

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