For all you non-Brits out there ‘Bakewell’ is a place, not a judgement on your cooking abilities. Like all colloquial dishes, it’s also very controversial. I can fully understand, the mere thought of finding carrot in a pasty fills me with rage.
There’s an awful lot of debate about the correct way to make a Bakewell. Raspberries or cherries? Fresh fruit or jam? Iced or not? Some people even opt for custard fillings.
For me, this is the perfect recipe, crisp buttery pastry, moist almond sponge, jam with just enough tartness from extra fruit and not a hint of icing in sight. I really can’t bear icing.
I will admit that the pastry isn’t the easiest to work with (especially on a warm day) but the results are so delicious it’s totally worth it.
make 15 slices
200g plain flour
40g icing sugar
150g raspberry jam
handful of fresh or frozen raspberries
100g ground almonds
100g self raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp almond extract
handful of flaked almonds
Pre-heat the oven to 180°c and grease a 20cm x 30xcm tin.
In a large bowl, beat together the butter and icing sugar, followed by the flour. This should give you a very soft mixture, a little bit like a soft biscuit dough. Spread this into the prepared tin, as best as you can. As I said it’s not the easiest dough to work with because it can be quite be sticky. Even it out and cover it with a sheet of grease proof paper. Pop it in the fridge to chill for 15 minutes.
Once it’s chilled, pile on some baking beans and bake it for 20 minutes. Next, remove the beans, un-cover it and return it to the oven for a further 5-10 minutes, until it is lovely and golden. Set this aside to cool a little whilst you prepare the fillings.
Warm the jam a little and stir through the fruit. Spread this evenly across the base.
The final stage is to make the frangipane. Beat together the butter and sugar using an electric hand or stand mixer. Next add in the almonds before sifting in the flour and baking powder. Give this all a good mix. In a separate bowl or jug, whisk together the eggs and almond extract before beating this into the dry mixture.
Pour this batter evenly over the base and bake 30 minutes. Scatter over the flaked almonds and bake for a further five minutes. It should be a lovely golden brown colour when it’s done.
Remove it from the oven and sprinkle over a little sugar whilst it’s still warm. Leave it in the tin to cool completely before cutting.
This is really yummy served with a spoonful of clotted cream.