When we were invited down to St Albans' very own bakery gem The Pudding Stop, we didn't just leave with a bellyful of their delirious Nutella-infused doughnuts and a steamy slice of inside gossip from The Great British Bake Off tent. Owner and former contestant Johnny Shepherd was kind enough to reveal the recipe behind his locally-esteemed raspberry Bakewell tarts.
Fret not if your baking skills amount to little more than flat flans and soggy bottoms, you can order these giddy little desserts, freshly prepared on Deliveroo.
Raspberry Bakewell Tart
For the shortcrust pastry (425g)
225g plain flour
120g cold unsalted butter
50g icing sugar
A pinch of sea-salt
2 tablespoons cold water
For the tarts
Flour, for dusting
385g raspberry jam
65g unsalted butter
165g caster sugar
4 large eggs
165g ground almonds
1 teaspoon almond extract
A pinch of salt
A liberal handful of flaked almonds to cover
Put the flour in a large bowl. Cut the butter into little cubes and rub into the flour. Stop when most of the butter has been incorporated but is still in clumps. Stir in the icing sugar and salt.
Make a well in the centre of the mixture and pour in the cold water. Bring the pastry together into a dough using your hands. Tip onto a lightly floured surface and knead a couple of times and roll into a ball. Wrap in clingfilm and chill for at least 30 mins.
Keep it rolling
Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured work surface to about 3mm thick. Use it to line a greased 23cm loose-bottomed tart tin, prick all over with a fork and chill for 30 minutes.
Spoon the jam into a bowl and stir. Spread the jam evenly over the pastry and return it to the fridge while you make the filling.
Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/350°F/Gas mark 4.
Just beat it
Cream the butter, salt and sugar together in a bowl until pale and fluffy. Lightly beat the eggs, then add them to the butter mixture a little at a time with a handful of ground almonds when necessary to prevent the mixture from curdling. Once all the egg has been combined stir in the remaining ground almonds and the almond extract.
Can you fill me in
Pour the filling into the tart case and liberally sprinkle over the flaked almonds. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until firm to the touch and golden brown.
Leave to cool, then slice with a bread knife for a clean cut – sawing like a piece of wood rather than pushing downward. To serve warm, place slices on individual plates and into an oven preheated to 150°C/130°C fan/300°F/Gas mark 2 for 5-10 minutes.
Serve with vanilla ice cream, custard or better still, both.
The Pudding Stop is available on Deliveroo in St Albans. Cookbook 'Puddings' by Johnny Shepherd is available now.