Hi! Welcome to my blog. I am a major foodie, with a haphazard cooking philosophy, currently making that transition from cooking and baking for friends and family to 'wonder if I could make this my career'. Follow me for recipes, the outcomes of a few experiments, and general lovely foodiness. Opinions, reviews and recommendations are all my own.

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Mary Berry's Bakewell Tart - Great Comic Relief Bake Off Challenge No. 2

Earlier this week I blogged my intention to work through the technical challenges from the Great Comic Relief Bake Off, and shared the results of my first attempt at Chocolate Eclairs - post here

Today's challenge comes from Episode Two, and it is a great British classic - the Bakewell Tart. This challenge uses Mary Berry's recipe - found on the BBC Food website here. I'm not tackling these in the order of episodes particularly, in fact my only rule is to follow the recipe to the letter - a personal challenge for me as I have a natural urge to meddle with things! As we have spent the weekend visiting the in-laws, I decided to make a Bakewell Tart to take with us, as I apparently am unable to stop myself from arriving on people's doorsteps with hampers of baked goods, like some wannabe Bree van der Kamp (of Desperate Housewife fame), not that anyone has complained to date!

The Bakewell Tart was particularly important for me to get right, as I grew up twenty minutes down the road from Bakewell, and spent a huge portion of my childhood there playing in the park, feeding the ducks by the river, and sampling the local delicacy. I really felt I had to do this one justice for the 9 year old me.

I found this recipe really easy to follow, and everything came together really nicely. The only issue I encountered was that my flan dish is slightly larger than the 8 inches specified in the recipe, and because of that I had a little excess pastry case as the filling didn't come as far up the dish as it should have. But I'm being overly critical at that, the tart tasted delicious! I wouldn't change a thing about this recipe, and it's definitely going to become a firm favourite in our house!


THE RECIPE (taken from BBC Food)

For the shortcrust pastry
For the filling
For the icing

Preparation method

  1. To make the pastry, measure the flour into a bowl and rub in the butter with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add the water, mixing to form a soft dough.

  2. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured work surface and use to line a 20cm/8in flan tin. Leave in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes.

  3. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6 (180C fan).

  4. Line the pastry case with foil and fill with baking beans. Bake blind for about 15 minutes, then remove the beans and foil and cook for a further five minutes to dry out the base.

  5. For the filing, spread the base of the flan generously with raspberry jam.

  6. Melt the butter in a pan, take off the heat and then stir in the sugar. Add ground almonds, egg and almond extract. Pour into the flan tin and sprinkle over the flaked almonds.

  7. Bake for about 35 minutes. If the almonds seem to be browning too quickly, cover the tart loosely with foil to prevent them burning.

  8. Meanwhile, sift the icing sugar into a bowl. Stir in cold water and transfer to a piping bag.

  9. Once you have removed the tart from the oven, pipe the icing over the top, giving an informal zig zag effect.

I am entering this bake into this month's Tea Time Treats, hosted by Lavender and Lovage and What Kate Baked, and run this month by Kate. The theme is 'Puddings' and I can't think of a better entry than this classic!


  1. This looks great! Very neat icing and perfect pastry!

    1. Thank you!! I was a bit miffed with the lip of pastry - need to invest in a smaller flan dish :-) but the Mary Berry recipe is amazingly easy - loved it x

  2. I couldn't agree more- a classic and a perfect pudding! I'm sure it must have gone down a storm with your in-laws, what a treat of a gift to bring along! Thank you v much for entering TTT!

    1. Thanks! It did go down well, in fact they requested another for their next visit! Biggest seal of approval you can get! x

  3. Just tryed to do this. My filling was not thick enough and the jam kind of seeped through to the top. SO annoyed but first time so have to not be so hard on myself.

    1. What's most important is how does it taste?! I found it best to put the jam in whilst the pastry is still warm from being blind baked, and then it absorbs a bit into the pastry... The filling should be quite runny when you put it in so it spreads evenly easily. x

  4. I am definitely going to try this it looks delicious!! my husband will love it!!
    I love the name of your blog too!!

  5. I really like the look of this cake! Just what i was looking for! :) Feel free to check out some of my recipes too at http://bakingeatingblogging.blogspot.ie/

    1. Bakewell tart is the best! :-) thanks for visiting my blog!

    2. I followed this recipe a couple of months ago. The tart is as delicious as it is easy to make. I go to my buddy's for dinner with his family every Saturday ... this went down a storm when I first made it. Going to crack on with another later today. Thanks for sharing a great recipe.


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