Sunday, 12 February 2012

Baking challenge #2: Mary Berry's Bakewell slices

Mary Berry's bakewell slices, as baked by EJ

We had a special visitor this weekend, Owen's mum came over! Partly due to my indecisive nature and partly because I want to bake things people actually want to eat, I asked Tez to choose which Mary Berry bake to try next. It was tricky, like me, Tez kept stopping on the pages with images to say how nice the cakes looked. As tempting as it is to go straight for the recipes with adjacent images, I'm sticking to my guns and baking all of the recipes without images first (although I really can't wait to bake page 165, those chocolatines look they might actually be the best thing ever).

I counted just now, it seems that there are 158 recipes without images in Mary Berry's Baking Bible (crikey), I'm on #2, which probably means I should up my game with the baking frequency.

So baking challenge #2 was bakewell slices (p239). I love bakewell tarts, but I've always avoided baking almondy things because Owen hates almonds (and it would be kind of mean to bake something and not share it with him). BUT, he tried the bakewell slices and has been converted! It turns out that Mary Berry's bakewell slices are so good they converted an almond-phobic dude into someone who will (out of his own free will) eat half of that tray bake, before the end of the day. Mary Berry you awesome lady! I now have the green light to bake bakewell-ish things to my heart's content. Joy!

The un-cut tray bake came out of the tin exceptionally easily

The bakewell slices have a layer of short crust pastry, a layer of raspberry jam and a layer of almondy sponge, topped with flaked almonds. They tasted beautiful, exactly like a bakewell slice should. This is a great recipe for afternoon tea, very simple and quick to make. You pop the flaked almonds on top before baking the slices, so there is no icing or finishing- the cake is good to go as soon as it's out of the oven (give or take a few minutes cooling time). The sponge was lovely and moist and not too sweet. Totally perfect- I can tell this will become a regular bake for me.

I just like stacking them up, don't they look awesome?

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