Bakewell Tarts

My husband and girls are off to marshal at a bike race in town this morning. They’ve done so for the last 3 years, and the girls now expect a minor league feast to be provided to protect against the cold, and entice passers by to stop, chat, and share. This year the feast included mince pies, individual carrot and raisin muffins, fruit scones, pizza, and these Bakewell tarts, along with 4 Thermos flasks of hot chocolate, coffee, and tea. As you can imagine, I spent all of yesterday afternoon cooking gratuitously.

I remember enjoying Bakewell Tarts when I was a child. Pastry encrusted tarts filled with a smear of home made jam, topped with a moist almond flavored cake layer. I don’t think I’ve seen them since we moved state side of the pond, but of course commercially prepared ones would be totally unsuitable for me to eat these days anyway.

Traditionally, the jam included should be raspberry, but since I really dislike pips, I sieve it if I use raspberry. However, since I don’t have raspberries in my garden, and I do have apricots, I used apricot jam for the tarts pictured here, and no sieving was involved.

Apricot flavored Bakewell Tart

Apricot and Almond flavored Bakewell Tart

This recipe makes 24 individual pies.

Margarine for greasing 24 muffin tins
1 recipe of sweet almond pastry
~12 fl. oz raspberry or other jam (sieved if desired)

4 eggs
4 oz sugar
2 oz margarine
4 oz smooth apple sauce
juice of ½ a lemon
1/2 tsps vanilla essence
1/4 tsp almond essence
10 oz (2 1/2 cups) blanched almond flour
5 oz tapioca flour or tapioca/cornstarch mix
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

flaked almonds for decoration

Heavily grease 2 muffin trays (for 24 muffins).

Roll out the pastry to about 1/4″ thick, and use a circular cookie cutter to cut out circles and use to line the muffin tins.

In the bottom of each pastry case put 2 – 3 tsp jam.

Break the eggs into a large bowl (food processor works) and beat for 30 seconds (or with a large whisk for about 2 minutes) until the eggs have turned a pale yellow and frothy all the way through. This doesn’t come out right unless the eggs are beaten first.

Add the sugar and beat for another 20 seconds (or a little longer by hand), then beat in the margarine.

Sprinkle the rest of the cake ingredients over the egg mixture, and either beat until they have been incorporated (10 seconds plus a scraping down in the middle), or fold in by hand with a large metal spoon.

Top the jam with enough of the almond cake mixture to fill the case 2/3rds of the way up.

Place 2 or 3 almond flakes in the middle of each cake, for decoration.

Cook in the middle of the oven with a sheet of foil on the rack above to protect from over-browning for 40 minutes at 360F, or until the cake mixture has cooked (and a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean).

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