Living in permanent fear of a soggy bottom- GBBO Bakealong, Pastry Week

baking, gbbo, recipes

 So it’s pastry week.

I’ve never been the biggest fan of pastry. I used to scoop the filling out of the apple pie, squeeze the custard out of the eclair and pick the chocolate off the profiteroles.

But to be honest, that’s because I never really ate perfect pastry. I thought the apple tart was supposed to have a soggy bit at the bottom, that soaked up the apply juices. My dad is a fabulous cook but he never sweetened his pastry and especially when I was younger, the steaming pies coming out of the oven seemed like a bit of a let down.

I supposed I was predisposed to dislike pastry.

But done properly, with the pastry crumbly, sweet and buttery- like a good shortbread) a pie can become perfection.

So this week I decided to make frangipane tart- mostly because I wasn’t sure id actually ever eaten one. Usually pungent with almond essence, shop bought frangipane never appealed to the eternal marzipan hater in me (yuck).

Adding Nutella to the tart happened because what in gods name isn’t improved by Nutella? (Ok a fair few things but whatever). Nutella makes everything better. Fact.

To be honest, watching bake off this week left me a bit confused. I had researched frangipane tarts and Queen Mary Berry’s recipe definitely does NOT say to blindbake. Yet there Paul Hollywood was, explaining to Ian that the reason his tart hadn’t really hit the mark was that he hadn’t blind baked?

Such a struggle.

I panicked and blind baked. This ended up giving me a crispy base, but I felt like the pastry caught a bit too much colour from being baked twice. Next time I’ll blind bake for a maximum of 5 minutes, if at all.

It was lovely seeing Mat get a bit of recognition. Even as Paul discussed him being a contender for star baker, he sounded quite surprised that Mar had actually managed to do well.

Nobody else seemed to have an easy run of it this week. Pastry is such a tricky one.

It was sad to see Alvin go (I love how he always calls Paul sit as though he’s his headmaster) but he had a disaster of a week.

I felt sorry for nadiya remaking her puff pastry when it was lumpy, while Mat just ploughed on with it regardless when his was the same. And his turned out perfect. To be honest I’m pretty certain my puff pastry was mottled looking when I made the arlettes and I just went on ahead (too lazy to do them again) and they worked out fine!

Anyway down to business. This tart has a crispy pastry base, with rich Nutella and a slightly nutty and sweet frangipane,studded with tangy berries. It is loosely based around the Apricot and Ginger frangipane tart on BBC Good Food 😊

Nutella and berry frangipane tart




  • 200g plain flour
  • 100g cold butter
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 1 egg


  • 6-7 tbsp nutella
  • 100g room temp butter
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 140g ground almonds
  • 75g plain flour
  • 2 eggs 
  • Frozen/fresh fruit of choice to top


  1. To make pastry= rub butter, sugar and flour together with your fingertips until there are no lumps of butter remaining and the mix looks like a crumble.
  2. Make a well in the centre of the mix and crack in an egg, beating with a fork and incorporating the dry mix into the egg until it forms a dough. Work the dough until it just comes together, then wrap in clingfilm and chill for at least 30 minutes. If the mix isn’t coming together, add a couple of tbsp of cold water.
  3. While the dough is chilling and relaxing, you can too. Once it’s done, roll out to the thickness of a pound coin and use to line a tart case, preferably with a loose bottom. Patch it up with more dough if bits fall off or holes appear, I won’t tell anyone, promise. Leave a bit of overhang at the edges, and trim after you’ve baked, to prevent too much shrinkage. Chill for another 30 minutes. There will be some leftover pastry.
  4. If choosing not to blind bake, you can make the frangipane now, but creaming the room temp butter with the caster sugar until it’s smooth and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well with each addition. Then add the ground almonds and plain flour and mix to form a smooth batter.
  5. If you wish to blind bake, the line the chilled pastry case with baking paper and something to weigh it down (in my case, old rice). Then bake for a couple of minutes with the baking paper in, and for a few minutes with the baking parchment out. If not blindbaking, place a baking sheet in the oven to heat up, while you spread the raw pastry case with an even layer of nutella (if blind baking, allow the case to cool slightly before you do this). Regardless, preheat your oven to 180C. 
  6. Then fill the rest with frangipane. I piped it in to get an even layer, but dolloping it in and smoothing the top off should work too!
  7. Stud with fruit of your choice, and pop in the oven for 40-60 minutes. You’ll know it’s done when a skewer inserted into the frangipane comes out clean. It’s a good idea to put a bit of foil over the top of the tart after about 20 minutes, to prevent it browning too much before the frangipane is cooked.

  8. Leave to cool in the tart case for 10 minutes before popping it out from the loose bottom. 
  9. Enjoy! If you make it then please let me know.☺️

If you’d like to follow me Baking along then add me on snapchat at mkm27! Or follow my Instagram at Caityskitchen.😘


9 thoughts on “Living in permanent fear of a soggy bottom- GBBO Bakealong, Pastry Week

  1. Next time, rather than lessening your baking time, when you see the pastry getting close to the color you’d like cover it (I usually just have to do the edges) with aluminum foil. It’ll continue to bake without the color change. And yes, nutella is magical. πŸ˜‰


    1. Thank you for the advice! And if you look at number 7 in the method for the recipe, that’s what I did 😊 because otherwise the pastry and the frangipane would have caught too much colour on the second bake.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s