I needed a ‘British-themed’ something for a family celebration and after much deliberation decided to give Felicity Cloake’s, ‘Perfect Bakewell Tart’, as published in The Guardian, a try.  Who knew there were so many variations of a Bakewell Tart?  I think the almond flour and fresh raspberries (from the backyard!), were the deciding factors for me…and we all agreed this was really lovely, (and Auntie Jino, I promise that my next attempt at a British treat will be a Victoria Sponge!).  I weighed all of the ingredients, added almond extract and used a 25 cm tart tin (instead of a 23 cm in Felicity’s recipe) – this is fiddly, but definitely worth it – enjoy!

Bakewell Tart

For the pastry – this needs to be made ahead and chilled for an hour:

140 g flour AND a pinch of salt

85 g cold butter AND ice cold water (as needed)

For the frangipane:

110 g EACH butter (at room temperature) AND berry sugar

2 eggs AND 1/2 t. almond extract

110 g almond flour AND 25 g flour AND 1/2 t. baking powder

zest from half a lemon AND a pinch of salt

For the compote (or use about 100 g of raspberry jam):

250 g fresh raspberries AND 30 g berry sugar AND juice from half a lemon (1 T.)

flaked almonds and icing sugar and fresh raspberries for topping

To make the pastry, whisk together the flour and salt in a medium bowl and then work in the butter with a pastry cutter until it’s well mixed and mealy in texture.  Add the cold water in small amounts until the mix just comes together in a dough – it should not be sticky.  Wrap well and chill for at least an hour (this is the one component I made the evening before).

Preheat the oven to 375 and lightly butter a 25 cm tart pan with a removable bottom.  Roll the pastry out on a lightly floured surface until it’s large enough to line the tart pan, then lightly press it in and give it a trim if necessary.  Lay down a sheet of parchment paper and weigh the pastry down with baking beads or dried beans and bake for 15 minutes until the pastry is golden.  Time your preparation so that when this comes out of the oven, the compote and frangipane are ready to use.

For the compote – put the berries, sugar and lemon juice in a small pot and bring it all to a boil while mixing frequently.  Simmer for about 12 minutes until thickened and then set this aside to cool.

For the frangipane, cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy (I used my electric mixer), then beat in the eggs and almond extract, then carefully stir in the almond flour, flour, baking powder, lemon zest and salt.

When the pastry comes out of the oven, remove the beans and parchment and then return the pan to the oven for another 5 minutes – it should get just a titch darker and dry out a bit.  Take it out of the oven, spread the compote evenly over the hot pastry, then spread the frangipane mix evenly over the compote.  Bake for 20 minutes until it’s golden and has risen (it should look a bit like a flat cake).  Add the almonds for the last 5 minutes of baking (or sprinkle them on immediately when the tart comes out).  Allow the tart to cool completely in it’s pan, then remove it from the tart pan to a platter and sprinkle with almonds, icing sugar and fresh raspberries to serve.

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