When one of our readers got in touch to ask for our views on the Bakewell tart versus the Bakewell pudding, I was ashamed to admit that the So Derbyshire team has never really given it much thought!
As a voice for the county, I felt that that needed putting right. These are the pressing issues of our day, after all!
Now, as I happened to be in the area this afternoon, I decided to pop in to one of the few places one can go to in order to reach a conclusive verdict on the subject: The Bakewell Tart Shop (naturally, in Bakewell itself!)
At this point I feel it’s necessary to drop an even bigger clanger than that horrifying admission I made in the first sentence.
That’s right, I didn’t even know that a Bakewell pudding was a thing!
I’m sorry! Please forgive me, please continue to read, and please know that I am far better educated now than I was a few hours ago!
Because its existence has only just been brought to my attention, I will start my mini review with the Bakewell pudding. So, here goes…
First impressions, I think it looks very much like one of those absolutely dreadful Portuguese custard tarts. Not very appealing to look at.
Opening it up, I can see that inside it’s very similar to the Bakewell tart I’m more familiar with, only wrapped in pastry. I take a bite.
It’s really nice! (I can hear that sigh of relief you’re all making!)
The store says on its website: “Our own recipe Bakewell pudding is a puff pastry case covered in jam and topped off with a unique ground almond filling.”
The pastry is flaky and the filling is a lot gooier than I had first expected – whatever they’ve done to make their unique ground almond filling, it’s good!
So, it’s a strong start for the pudding fans!
Strictly speaking, it is a traditional Bakewell square I have chosen to sample. Apparently the Bakewell pudding was actually the first recipe to be conceived, and the tart is a variant of that.
The tart/square does look more appealing than the pudding, but I can see why some varieties (I’m looking at you Mr Kipling) come covered in icing and with a cherry on top!
Taking a look at the cross section, I can see nicely-defined layers here. There’s a shortcrust pastry base, jam next, and then frangipane, topped off with flaked almonds.
This is also a very nice dessert. The topping for this is also made to a special recipe using ground almonds.
It’s going to be hard to come up with a preference. One thing I will point out, however, is that the Bakewell tart is about £1 cheaper…!
Let’s not upset anybody. Both desserts are very nice.
For me, it was the tart that won the day, owing to its simplicity – and the fact that all that puff pastry flies off and goes everywhere when you try to eat it!
However, I’d certainly have the Bakewell pudding again, and in fact I think its puff pastry outer shell makes it quite well suited to being warmed up and served up with a dollop of ice cream after a nice meal.
The Bakewell tart is perhaps better suited to being an accompaniment to a cup of tea or a coffee.
But don’t let me have the final word… I’d love to hear what you have to say! Let us know via the comments box below or via our social media channels.