Bakewell Tart

P1050047Here’s another #TastyTuesday recipe that I’ve not made before, though I’ve eaten and enjoyed it a time or two while out and about. Bakewell tart is a traditional English recipe dating back to the 1870’s and one Mrs. Greaves, proprietress of the Rutford Arms Inn in the village of Bakewell, Derbyshire. The story goes that Mrs. Greaves and her cook had a bit of a miscommunication about the type of tart Mrs. Greaves ordered—a jam custard tart—and her cook, instead of mixing the jam with the custard to fill the pie shell, spread jam on the bottom of the pie crust and poured the custard mixture on top. And thus the Bakewell Tart was born—happily for Mrs. Greaves and her cook the tart was a big hit with customers.

Bakewell Tart

Shortcrust Pastry:
175 grams/6 oz plain white (all purpose) flour
pinch of salt
75 g/3 oz butter, margarine or lard
30 ml/ 2 tbsp cold water

1. Mix the flour and salt together in a bowl. Cut the fat into small pieces and add it to the flour.

2. Using both hands, rub the fat into the flour between finger and thumb tips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.

3. Add the water, sprinkling it evenly over the surface. Stir it in with a round-bladed knife until the mixture begins to stick together in large lumps.

4. With one hand, collect the mixture together and knead lightly for a few seconds to give a firm, smooth dough. Use the pastry straight away or allow to rest for 30 minutes. It can also be wrapped in cling film (plastic wrap) and kept in the refrigerator for one or two days.

5. Sprinkle flour on a work surface and rolling pin, and roll out the dough to approximately 0.3 cm (1/8 inch).

For the Filling:

4 tablespoons strawberry jam
4 eggs
8 tablespoons sugar
4 ounces butter
3/4 cup ground almonds

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F/180°C.

2. Line a 9-inch pie pan with the pastry. Spread the jam over the pastry and set aside.

3. Beat the eggs and sugar together. Melt the butter in a small saucepan and when it is melted and beginning to brown, add it to the egg and sugar mixture. Fold in the almonds and place the mixture over the strawberry jam.

4. Bake until set—about 20-25 minutes—and serve hot or cold. (I definitely recommend it warm!)

If this easy recipe seems all a bit too much, you can order a Bakewell tart from the Bakewell Tart Shop & Coffee House, in the town of Bakewell, Derbyshire. They make a Bakewell tart from Mrs. Greaves’ original recipe, as well as numerous variations on the treat. They will even ship internationally, or, if you’re in the area, you can stop in for coffee and a fresh slice of Bakewell in their coffee shop.

*The shortcrust pastry recipe is from the Good Housekeeping All Colour Family Cookbook, and the filling recipe is from Great British Cooking by Jane Garmey.

2 thoughts on “Bakewell Tart

  1. kateinlimerick

    You’re the best. I’m not saying I’ll ever get around to baking this, but I have thought about it every time I’ve had someone else’s (usually the grocery store’s version), and now I have a tested & approved recipe on standby.
    And as an aside – do you have ranch dressing in the UK? They don’t seem to have it here in Ireland. They have a garlic dressing that they use for dipping wings or pouring over chips (seriously? garlic cheese chips? and Americans are the ones who go overboard?!?), but it’s just not the same. I realized the other day that I haven’t had ranch dressing in over five years now, and looked up a couple of recipes, but I’m just not confident…

    1. Ginny Williams Post author

      If you ever come to visit, I’ll make you one–I will not transport one to London if we meet up however! As for ranch dressing, we didn’t used to, but it has just started to come in–used to be some weird dressing like you’re describing (oh, they still have it) but I’ve noticed dressing called “ranch” recently. Haven’t tried it, so it doesn’t mean it’s any good, though I have seen Newman’s Own which could be worth a try.

      Garlic cheese chips? Erk. No thanks.


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