Great British Bake Off alumni, Freya Cox is the queen of vegan desserts and her new cookbook, Simply Vegan Baking takes the challenge out of vegan cooking. We love this vegan take on a dessert classic, Bakewell Tart.
Freya Cox’s Vegan Bakewell Tarts
Bakewell tarts are such a well-loved teatime treat that there was no doubt I needed the perfect recipe for one. The crisp pastry and soft chewy frangipane match so well with the slightly sharp jam – they are a real favorite. I have included a recipe for the pastry here, but you could use shop-bought pastry, if you prefer.
For the sweet shortcrust pastry (optional)
200g (7oz) plain (all-purpose) flour, plus extra for dusting
30g (1oz) icing (confectioners’) sugar
½ tsp salt
Zest of 1 lemon
100g (3½oz) vegan butter
2 tbsp ice-cold water
For the frangipane
110g (3¾oz) vegan butter
110g (3¾oz) caster (granulated) sugar
¾ tsp almond extract
75ml (2½fl oz) plant milk
1 tsp lemon juice
35g (1¼oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
150g (5½oz) ground almonds
1½ tsp baking powder
For the filling and topping
75g (2½oz) raspberry jam (see recipe below or shop-bought) jam
Around 9 fresh or frozen raspberries
A handful of flaked (sliced) almonds
30g (1oz) icing (confectioners’) sugar
1. For the pastry, put all the ingredients except the water in a food processor and pulse until it has a texture like breadcrumbs. Add the water and pulse until it starts to come together into a ball. Tip it out onto a work surface and bring it together into a smooth dough, kneading gently. Alternatively, if you don’t have a food processor you can do this by hand. Combine the flour, icing sugar, salt and lemon zest in a large bowl, then rub in the butter between your fingertips until it forms rough breadcrumbs. Add the water and bring together into a ball. Knead until smooth.
2. Roll out the pastry on a flour-dusted surface – or between two sheets of baking parchment – until it is around 3mm (⅛ inch) thick. Lay the pastry over a 23cm (9 inch) tart tin, then carefully push the pastry into the sides allowing the excess to hang over the edges. Place the pastry case into the freezer to chill for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 180ºC (350ºF) fan.
3. Once chilled, remove from the freezer and place a sheet of baking parchment into the case. Fill with baking beans (pie weights) or rice and bake for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and take out the beans and parchment, then return to the oven for a further 12 minutes until the edges are a light golden brown.
4. Place the tin on a cooling rack to cool until the pastry is just warm to the touch. Trim the excess pastry around the top edge with a serrated knife.
5. For the frangipane, put the butter, sugar and almond extract into a saucepan over a low heat and stir until just melted. Remove from the heat and add the milk and lemon juice, then set aside. Put the flour, ground almonds and baking powder in a large bowl and mix well. Pour the butter mixture into the dry ingredients and mix until smooth.
6. Cover the base of the pastry case with the jam, spreading it out evenly. Spoon the frangipane mixture over the jam and level with a spoon. Arrange the fresh raspberries across the top and scatter over the flaked almonds.
7. Bake the tart for 28–30 minutes until a skewer comes out clean and the top is golden brown. Once baked, remove from the oven and leave to cool on a cooling rack until cool enough to handle, before removing from the tart case from the tin to cool further.
8. In a small bowl, mix the icing sugar with a teaspoon of water until smooth, then drizzle over the Bakewell to finish. Enjoy!
Raspberry Jam Recipe (makes 1 small jar)
I like to use smooth seedless jam for my raspberry recipes – whilst there is nothing wrong with bits, in things such as a Swiss roll I find the smoother texture works much better. This has the perfect amount of sharpness to balance the sweetness of the fruit, and it is definitely better than shop-bought jam!
100g (3½oz) fresh or frozen raspberries
80g (2¾oz) jam sugar
Juice of ½ lemon
1. Put the raspberries, jam sugar and lemon juice into a saucepan over a medium heat. Use a potato masher or a fork to crush the raspberries until they are a pulp and there are no lumps; don’t boil the jam at this point. Once the raspberries have been crushed, place a sieve over a jug and pour the mixture into the sieve, pressing it through to remove all of the seeds.
2. Pour the sieved liquid back into the pan, then place back over a medium heat and bring to the boil. As soon as it starts to bubble, allow to rapidly boil for 3–5 minutes, stirring occasionally, then remove from the heat. You will be able to tell it’s ready when it looks thicker, and the jam at the sides of the pan looks like it is sticking. You can test whether your jam is ready by placing a drop of it onto a cold plate – leave it for 1 minute, then if it wrinkles when you push your finger through the jam, it is ready.
3. Pour the jam into a sterilized jar if you are using later, or into a bowl to cool if you are using for a recipe the same day. Enjoy!