Bakewell Tarts, as Jane from the GBBO's tent said, are classic and classy. They've certainly stood the test of time, and seem to have their origins in the Bakewell Pudding which was first made in the late 18th or early 19th century. Of course, whatever their history, there's a very good reason for their longevity and put simply it's because they're down right delicious.
Who could not defy the enticing, simple charms of a Bakewell Tart? Crisp sweet pastry. Fruity flavoursome jam. Moreish
almondy frangipane. Simple water icing. Finished with a pretty
So having watched, like most of the nation, GBBO's pastry week on Wednesday evening I knew that I wanted to make this classic tart as part of my Blogger's Bake Along challenge. That said, given my love of pastry, I was also tempted to by the signature Breakfast Pastries (Danish Pastries) and the showstopper filo Amuse Buche too....so watch out for another GBBO pastry related post soon!
There are so many ways in which a bakewell tart can be presented. Perhaps as small individual portions rather than a large family sized tart; with different flavoured jam; topped with a scattering of flaked almonds; with a modern zig-zag pattern of water icing; perhaps even finished off with a cherry.
Although I did entertain the idea of making a small batch of individual Bakewell Tarts just for Mr E and I to enjoy, I have to admit that I fell under the spell of this classic tart and made a large family sized one which is perfect for sharing. And even though I rang the changes a little regarding the flavours to those which the bakers in the tent used I felt that a larger tart would allow the feathering pattern to sing out.
The remaining GBBO bakers were supplied with a pinky-red food colouring which they used to create their feathering pattern, but knowing that such colours are usually (though not exclusively) not vegetarian friendly and therefore not suitable for our household, a melted chocolate was used to create my feathering decoration. Not only did the chocolate feathering negate any vegetarian issues it also brought an extra flavour which worked well with the morello cherry jam and almond frangipane.
As for the result. Well, we were pretty happy with our Chocolate & Cherry Bakewell Tart - it certainly baked-well 😉
Let's get to it and baaake
morello cherry jam and decorated with a chocolate feathering through the
simple water icing.
Hands on time approx: 35 mins Cook time: 50 - 55 mins Yield: 1 large 22cm tart
1 x 22cm loose bottomed deep fluted flan tin
For the sweet pastry (Pate Sucree)
- 138g Plain Flour, plus extra for rolling out
- 50g Icing Sugar
- 50g Unsalted Butter, chilled & diced
- 1 Large Egg
For the frangipane
- 140g Unsalted Butter, softened
- 70g Golden Caster Sugar
- 70g Caster Sugar
- 2 Eggs, Large
- 1 capful Almond Extract
- 140g Ground Almonds
For the layer of jam
- 2 tbsp Morello Cherry Jam (or any red / purple coloured jam)
For the icing and feathering decoration
- 225g Icing Sugar
- 40g Milk or Plain Chocolate
Notes: a) allow the icing to firm up for at least 30 minutes before slicing into it.