Bakewell Tart | Apple Blossom
Makes 12 tarts
You’ll need a 12-hole muffin or cupcake tin
For the coulis
200g fresh berries of choice
100ml DJ Wines Strawberry Liqueur 100g caster Sugar
300g Fen Farm butter, diced and chilled 400g plain flour
100g Hodmedod's chickpea flour
200g icing sugar
1 whole egg
2 egg yolks
A pinch of Norfolk Saffron threads
Make sure all the ingredients for this are at room temperature.
150g ground almonds
50g ground hazelnuts
40g plain flour
200g Fen Farm butter, softened
200g caster sugar
1 egg yolk
A small handful of flaked almonds
3 egg whites
180g caster sugar
300g Fen Farm butter, softened at room temperature 50ml English Whiskey
4 tablespoons East Gate Larder Medlar Jelly 12 Apple Blossoms from Nurtured in Norfolk
Prepare the coulis the day before. Pour the liqueur over the fruit and allow them to macerate overnight.
Next day place the fruit, strawberry liqueur and sugar in a small saucepan and place over a medium heat. Stir for about two minutes until the mixture bubbles and foams. Remove from heat and blend until really smooth.
Now pour the mixture into a sieve set over a bowl, and using a whisk, push the fruit puree through into the bowl. Leave to cool, then taste and adjust to taste with more lemon juice if too sweet.
To make the pastry, mix the two flours and icing sugar together in a bowl and place in fridge to chill. Whisk the egg, yolks and saffron together in another bowl and place in the fridge to chill too.
Place the cubed, chilled butter into the chilled flour and icing sugar mix and rub together quickly with your fingers until you have the consistency of coarse sand. Now add the egg and saffron mixture and bring together until you have a smooth dough. Be careful not to overwork the dough as this will lead to a tough, chewy pastry, which will shrink when baking. Preheat the oven to 180 C fan.
Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface, to about the thickness of a pound coin. Using a little butter, grease your cupcake or muffin tins. Cut out 12 discs of pastry and gently one into each hole. Place a cupcake case in each one and fill with baking beans.
Bake blind for 8-10 minutes the colour changes slightly on the visible lip of the pastry case. Take out of oven and carefully remove the muffin cases. Now place 2 teaspoons of fruit coulis into the bottom of each pastry case (don’t be tempted to add more, as the tarts will erupt during baking!).
Now make the frangipane. Mix the ground nuts, flour and salt together and separately beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Lightly whisk the eggs and yolks together, then gradually beat into the butter and sugar mixture. Halfway through, scrape the edges of the mixture down into the bowl. If the mixture starts to curdle, add a little of the flour mixture.
Gently fold in the rest of the flour mixture until you have a lovely nutty batter. Using a piping bag and nozzle, carefully pipe the frangipane into each of the tart cases, angling the nozzle slightly to the lip of the pastry and complete one circuit of the tart. Then fill in the middle by piping another smaller circle (this helps to keep the coulis in the bottom of the tarts without squishing up the sides).
Rejoice in having completed this task by sprinkling the top of each tart with flaked almonds. Bake at 180 Fan for 20-25 minutes. They should be brown and firm in the middle when touched lightly.
Once baked take out of the oven and leave the tray to cool slightly, you need to take these out when they are slightly warm but not straight away. Then gently prize the cups of glory from their moulds, using something small and thin like a small paring knife. Place on a wire rack.
Spoon the Medlar jelly with a splash of water into a small pan, and set over a medium heat and stir until melted. Brush over the tops of the tarts to leave a glossy finish. Leave to cool completely.
Now to make the meringue buttercream. Place the egg whites and sugar in a heat-proof bowl and set over a pan of simmering water. Stir until the sugar has dissolved, then using an electric hand whisk, beat until the mixture is thick, glossy and peaks have formed. This is a Swiss meringue.
Keep whisking and now add the butter in three stages, beating well after each addition If the mixture looks like it's going to curdle keep going (whilst praying!). Once you have a glossy delicious looking icing, beat in the whisky. Remove from heat and leave to cool, but not cold.
To finish, pipe a small amount of the buttercream on top of each cooled tart and top with an apple blossom.