Bakewell Tart… er… Pudding – Daring Bakers Challenge June 2009

June 27th, 2009

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My First Daring Bakers Challenge!! I was so excited to find out what my first challenge would be with the Daring Bakers, and was a little scared when I heard about the different components needed for this tart… er… pudding (as the hosts like to put it). And a Big THANK YOU to the hosts for this month and to the founders and everyone at The Daring Kitchen for all their hard work.

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The June Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Jasmine of Confessions of a Cardamom Addict and Annemarie of Ambrosia and Nectar. They chose a Traditional (UK) Bakewell Tart… er… pudding that was inspired by a rich baking history dating back to the 1800’s in England.

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Bakewell tarts…er…puddings combine a number of dessert elements but still let you show off your area’s seasonal fruits.

Like many regional dishes there’s no “one way” to make a Bakewell Tart…er…Pudding, but most of today’s versions fall within one of two types. The first is the “pudding” where a layer of jam is covered by an almondy pastry cream and baked in puff pastry. The second is the “tart” where a rich shortcrust pastry holds jam and an almondy sponge cake-like filling.

The version we’re daring you to make is a combination of the two: a sweet almond-flavoured shortcrust pastry, frangipane and jam.

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Going by the suggestions given by the lovely hosts, I made the shortcrust pastry by hand (grating chilled butter into flour) and the jam also from scratch using fruits in season – Pink Lady Apple , Rhubarb and Cinnamon Jam. I’m glad I made the effort to make everything from scratch and would certainly make jam again, but would use a food processor for the pastry (Since making this tart, I have made pastry again and the food processor makes a nicer consistency with the pastry compared with what I was able to do by hand).

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Bakewell Tart…er…pudding

Makes one 23cm (9” tart)
Prep time: less than 10 minutes (plus time for the individual elements)
Resting time: 15 minutes
Baking time: 30 minutes
Equipment needed: 23cm (9”) tart pan or pie tin (preferably with ridged edges) (I used a quiche dish as this is all I had), rolling pin

One quantity sweet shortcrust pastry (recipe follows)
Bench flour
250ml (1cup (8 US fl. oz)) jam or curd, warmed for spreadability
One quantity frangipane (recipe follows)
One handful blanched, flaked almonds

Assembling the tart
Place the chilled dough disc on a lightly floured surface. If it’s overly cold, you will need to let it become acclimatised for about 15 minutes before you roll it out. Flour the rolling pin and roll the pastry to 5mm (1/4”) thickness, by rolling in one direction only (start from the centre and roll away from you), and turning the disc a quarter turn after each roll. When the pastry is to the desired size and thickness, transfer it to the tart pan, press in and trim the excess dough. Patch any holes, fissures or tears with trimmed bits. Chill in the freezer for 15 minutes.

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Preheat oven to 200C/400F.

Remove shell from freezer, spread as even a layer as you can of jam onto the pastry base. Top with frangipane, spreading to cover the entire surface of the tart. Smooth the top and pop into the oven for 30 minutes. Five minutes before the tart is done, the top will be poofy and brownish. Remove from oven and strew flaked almonds on top and return to the heat for the last five minutes of baking.

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The finished tart will have a golden crust and the frangipane will be tanned, poofy and a bit spongy-looking. Remove from the oven and cool on the counter. Serve warm, with crème fraîche, whipped cream or custard sauce if you wish.

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When you slice into the tart, the almond paste will be firm, but slightly squidgy and the crust should be crisp but not tough.

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Jasmine’s notes:
• If you cannot have nuts, you can try substituting Victoria sponge for the frangipane. It’s a pretty popular cake, so you shouldn’t have any troubles finding one in one of your cookbooks or through a Google search. That said, our dear Natalie at Gluten a Go Go has sourced some recipes and linked to them in the related alt.db thread.
• You can use whichever jam you wish, but if you choose something with a lot of seeds, such as raspberry or blackberry, you should sieve them out.
• The jam quantity can be anywhere from 60ml (1/4 cup) to 250ml (1cup), depending upon how “damp” and strongly flavoured your preserves are. I made it with the lesser quantity of home made strawberry jam, while Annemarie made it with the greater quantity of cherry jam; we both had fabulous results. If in doubt, just split the difference and spread 150ml (2/3cup) on the crust.

Annemarie’s notes:
• The excess shortcrust can be rolled out and cut into cookie-shapes (heck, it’s pretty darned close to a shortbread dough).

Sweet shortcrust pastry

Prep time: 15-20 minutes
Resting time: 30 minutes (minimum)
Equipment needed: bowls, box grater, cling film

225g (8oz) all purpose flour
30g (1oz) sugar
2.5ml (½ tsp) salt
110g (4oz) unsalted butter, cold (frozen is better)
2 (2) egg yolks
2.5ml (½ tsp) almond extract (optional – I used vanilla extract instead, like the notes said)
15-30ml (1-2 Tbsp) cold water

Sift together flour, sugar and salt. Grate butter into the flour mixture, using the large hole-side of a box grater. Using your finger tips only, and working very quickly, rub the fat into the flour until the mixture resembles bread crumbs. Set aside.

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Lightly beat the egg yolks with the almond extract (if using) and quickly mix into the flour mixture. Keep mixing while dribbling in the water, only adding enough to form a cohesive and slightly sticky dough.

Form the dough into a disc, wrap in cling and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes

Jasmine’s notes:
• I make this using vanilla salt and vanilla sugar.
• If you wish, you can substitute the seeds of one vanilla bean, one teaspoon of vanilla paste or one teaspoon of vanilla extract for the almond extract

Frangipane

Prep time: 10-15 minutes
Equipment needed: bowls, hand mixer, rubber spatula

125g (4.5oz) unsalted butter, softened
125g (4.5oz) icing sugar
3 (3) eggs
2.5ml (½ tsp) almond extract
125g (4.5oz) ground almonds
30g (1oz) all purpose flour

Cream butter and sugar together for about a minute or until the mixture is primrose in colour and very fluffy.

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Scrape down the side of the bowl and add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. The batter may appear to curdle. In the words of Douglas Adams: Don’t panic. Really. It’ll be fine. After all three are in, pour in the almond extract and mix for about another 30 seconds and scrape down the sides again.

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With the beaters on, spoon in the ground nuts and the flour. Mix well. The mixture will be soft, keep its slightly curdled look (mostly from the almonds) and retain its pallid yellow colour.

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Annemarie’s notes:
• Add another five minutes or more if you’re grinding your own almonds or if you’re mixing by hand (Heaven help you).

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27 Comments

  1. Beta Gal says:

    Congrats for rising to the challenge! It looks like a fiddly dish to make, but how awesome that you got to incorporate your new jam too.

  2. Welcome to Daring Bakers! It looks lovely and I have to agree, doing it in the food processor is better for the pastry and the heat from the hands affects the texture. Alternatively you can cut it with butter knives or a pastry cutter but the food processor is quickest 🙂

  3. sunita says:

    Well done on your first challenge…welcome to the club 🙂

  4. Welcome to Daring Bakers! Well done on the tart. Looks great. I love how you do step by step photos. I just don’t have the patience! 😉

  5. Anh says:

    Pudding or tart, this looks beautiful!!

  6. Chaitra says:

    Tart looks tempting and inviting!!Great entry for the challenge.
    Drop in sometime

  7. LegalAlien says:

    Good job!
    The jam has a really nice and delicate color!

  8. How it looks, I agree with you, using processor for the pastry is a good choice. Could I use any jam for this tarts-er-pudding?

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  9. deeba says:

    Congrats on your first challenge…you did brilliantly well! It’s gorgeous!

  10. isa says:

    Looks delicious! Love your step-by-step pictures. Wonderful job!

  11. Y says:

    Mmm looks delicious! Good to see you’ve finally joined the DB group! WOohoo 🙂

  12. Lauren says:

    Yum!! Your tart looks awesome, and your filling sounds wonderful!! Congrats on your first challenge =D.

  13. Lucky you made jam! This was the perfect occasion for it. Your tart looks beautifully golden too.

  14. isa says:

    Your tart looks delicious and your photos are lovely! Love your step-by-step pictures! Nicely done!

  15. Congratulations on your first DB Challenge. Your tart looks fantastic and your jam has a lovely colour to it. Well done 🙂

  16. Parita says:

    Tart looks gorgeous, perfectly baked!

  17. Simon says:

    Nice work with the ahh… as you would put it, tart…er…pudding! This is the first mega tart recipe I’ve read about (though, admittedly only read two other DB posts).

    If my understanding of pudding is right, to the British it carries a different meaning to what we would typically use here.

  18. Zita says:

    Welcome to the group! Love your step by step pics, and the flavors pairing is just wonderful 🙂

  19. Congratulations on completing your first DB Challenge. You did a fabulous job. I also used rhubard for my tart – but I did a strawberry/rhubarb jam. I would love to try your pink lady apple/rhubarb/cinnamon jam. I bet it was divine!

  20. jasmine says:

    Congratulations on your first DB challenge! Thanks for participating.

    j

  21. Barbara says:

    I’ve never had apple and cinnamon with rhubarb. It sounds great!

  22. Trisha says:

    I love sweet, crusty tarts…er… pudding. 🙂 And the apple/rhubarb component adds a different tangy sweetness to the whole dish. Mmmmm….

  23. Great job on the challenge, love all the pictures.

  24. You know for a pastry that was put together by hand on your first go, I think that a pretty good effort. I think I’m going to bake a tart now!

  25. Congrats on your first challenge and I jsut love the colour of the jam which sounds delish and your series of pixs in very clear and informative of the all process. Great to hear you loved this tart as I did. Bravo and kudos to you on this challenge. Cheers from Audax in Australia.

  26. Annemarie says:

    Well done one your first challenge, and glad it was one you enjoyed. The finished product looks so wonderfully edible. 🙂

  27. Anita says:

    Thank you very much to everyone for all your support for my very first Daring Bakers challenge!! I am looking forward greatly to this months one and all the ones to follow.

    Thanks for the lovely comments on photos and welcoming me to the group, I loved seeing everyone’s final tarts (or puddings as some may say). Will keep an eye out toward the end of this month. 😛

    Hi harcoutbreton – Any jam can be used, bought or made. Have a visit to some of the other Daring Bakers websites to check out what jam they used 🙂

    Hi Simon – yes I agree, I would consider this a tart… not a pudding. 🙂

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