Bakewell Tart

One of my coworkers lived in England until she was 11 years old. Of all British desserts, the one she misses most from her childhood is the Bakewell tart: a buttery crust with an almond filling and layer of raspberry jam. This delicious tart is a variation on Bakewell pudding, a jam-filled egg custard named after the town in the Derbyshire countryside where it was invented in the 1800s, supposedly by accident. I found a Bakewell tart recipe on the BBC website and adapted it. I love the flavor of raspberry jam, so I increased the amount from 1 tablespoon to 3. If you’d prefer less, stick with the original amount. Bakewell tarts are often topped with sliced almonds and icing, but I went with a simple dusting of powdered sugar instead.

Bakewell Tart

Adapted from the BBC

Crust

1 ¼ cups flour
5 tablespoons butter, cold
2-3 tablespoons cold water

Filling

1-3 tablespoons raspberry jam
8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 ¼ cups finely ground almonds
1 egg
½ teaspoon almond extract

Prepare the crust: Line a pie pan with parchment paper. Remove butter from fridge and cut into cubes. Place butter and flour in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until the texture of cornmeal. Add water and process until just combined. Roll out the dough on a floured surface, and press into the bottom and sides of the pie pan. Refrigerate for half an hour.

Blind bake the crust: Preheat oven to 400 °F. Line crust with foil or parchment paper, and fill with baking beans. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove foil and beans, and bake for another 5 minutes so the crust dries out. Let cool, and then spread crust with a layer of raspberry jam.

Prepare the filling: Grind almonds in a food processor. Melt butter over the stove in a medium-sized sauce pan.  Remove from heat and stir in sugar, ground almonds, egg, and almond extract. Pour filling over the layer of raspberry of jam.

Bake for around 35 minutes, until golden brown. Let cool for a few minutes, and then dust with powdered sugar. Store leftovers in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

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