Bakewell tart is named after the town of Bakewell in England, but it still feels like a braggart title to me. Bakewell (or “bake well” as I think of it) reminds me of the diner I used to visit in Pennsylvania whose name was simply “Best Diner.” After making my first Bakewell tart, I learned that the name was not a laughable irony – unlike the diner. Bakewell tart is a dessert that comes together simply and the tart will likely turn out splendidly even if you adjust the ingredients significantly (as you’ll see me suggest later in this post).
Bakewell tart is a pastry that traditionally consists of tart crust topped with a layer of jam and then a layer of frangipane (almond filling). I baked on a chilly day when leaving the house had zero appeal. So, I created my own version of Bakewell tart using what was available. I made a salted honey tart crust, polishing off two almost-empty honey jars that should have long ago been combined. For the jam layer, I used homemade orange marmalade gifted to me at Christmas that I’d saved for something special. And, instead of an almond filling, I used pine nuts that I had my freezer. (Tip: Keep nuts in the freezer so they don’t get rancid.)
The salted honey crust was my favorite part of this tart. You will see it appear again in future tart recipes on this site and maybe even as a shortbread-type cookie. However, choosing a jam that you love is what will make or break the tart for you. I want to try this again with a fig spread or some strawberry jam in the summer.
I encourage you to make this recipe your own; use an equal substitution of whatever jam and nuts you have on hand. I left my tart without the flair of frosting or a caramel drizzle – not every dessert needs a snazzy costume. But, gussy yours up as you see fit.