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Why Does The Pastry In My Cranberry Bakewell Tart Seem Underbaked?

Asked by dyl. Answered on 14th January 2022

Full question

I have frequently made the Cranberry Bakewell Tart in Feast and each time - despite following the recipe to the letter- the pastry underneath comes out underdone. It’s not baked blind but the recipe doesn’t require this. What am I doing wrong?

FEAST UK book cover
Cranberry Bakewell Tart
By Nigella
  • 14
  • 2

Our answer

Nigella's Cranberry Bakewell Tart (from FEAST) has cranberry jam topped with a layer of frangipane. The filling is baked in an almond shortcrust pastry case in a metal fluted tart pan. As the pan is metal, it should heat up quickly enough for the pastry case to bake through. However, the pastry dough does contain ground almonds (almond meal), which will make the pastry softer and may make it feel underdone in comparison with regular shortcrust pastry.

You could also try putting a large baking sheet in the oven when you turn the oven on to heat it up and make sure that the oven is fully preheated before baking the tart. Put the tart pan carefully on to the hot baking sheet and bake the tart as directed in the recipe. The heat from the baking sheet should ensure that the base of the tart heats up quickly and evenly as soon as the tart goes into the oven.

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