The National Bakewell Tart Day is celebrated on August 11 every year. This holiday is dedicated to all sweet tooth and dessert lovers! It highlights the English classic Bakewell tart — an English shortcrust pastry with layers of jam, frangipane, chopped almonds, and icing. It’s also a day to discover its relevance in the English food culture, as well as its rich and long history over the years. From traditional Bakewell tarts to its more modern variations, dive into the delicious goodness of this English dessert. Find out the ways you can celebrate National Bakewell Tart Day today.
History of National Bakewell Tart Day
The history of Bakewell tart goes way back to the 19th century when a woman named Mrs. Greaves, the landlady of the White Horse Inn, created the Bakewell pudding. She instructed her cooks to create a jam tart, but instead of incorporating the almond paste and jam into the pastry, the cook mistakenly spread the mixture on top of the tart. This created an egg custard that resembled a pudding. Luckily, this treat proved to be popular as visitors enjoyed every bite.
The specific date of the pudding’s discovery has been widely disputed. Some sources say it’s 1820, while others argue it’s 1860. However, the official date of its inclusion in Eliza Acton’s cookbook “Modern Cookery for Private Families” is 1845. It was formally called the ‘Bakewell pudding’ after its discovery in the town of Bakewell in Derbyshire, England.
Later on, in 1900, the Bakewell pudding evolved into a Bakewell tart. It’s a replica of the same recipe, except the egg custard was replaced with frangipane. This became a signature taste of the tart — a delicious mix of ground almonds, eggs, sugar, and butter. As the years went by, the chopped almonds were replaced by glace sugar paste. As soon as bakers started topping the tart with a candied half-cherry, it then became known as the ‘Cherry Bakewell.’ Another change applied was in terms of its size. Cherry Bakewell is designed to be smaller, individual bites, whereas the traditional Bakewell tart was 8 to 9 inches in diameter.
Today, the Bakewell tart is still extremely popular in the U.K. On August 11, 2020, the first National Bakewell Tart Day took place, celebrating the rich history and fascinating evolution of this English dessert.
National Bakewell Tart Day timeline
Mrs. Greaves, the landlady of White Horse Inn, serves the first Bakewell pudding.
The Bakewell pudding appears in Eliza Acton’s cookbook “Modern Cookery for Private Families.”
Bakers start to modernize the Bakewell pudding into a tart by replacing the egg custard with frangipane.
Bakewell tart gets designated its own national holiday in England.
National Bakewell Tart Day FAQs
What does a Bakewell tart taste like?
A Bakewell tart tastes like a combination of raspberry and almonds wrapped in a buttery crust.
What is the difference between Bakewell pudding and Bakewell tart?
The Bakewell tart is an egg-free version of the Bakewell pudding. The tart also contains finer almond toppings.
A Bakewell tart typically bakes anytime between 35 to 40 minutes, depending on your oven. Make sure to check the crust from time to time. Once the filling is firm and the crust is golden brown, it’s ready.
National Bakewell Tart Day Activities
Buy a Bakewell tart
What better way to celebrate National Bakewell Tart Day than treating yourself with a Bakewell tart? It’s also a great way to support local bakeries in your area.
Bake a Bakewell tart
If you’re up for the challenge, spend this day baking a Bakewell tart! It’s quick, simple, and easy to make. There are several recipes online that you can follow.
Send your loved one a Bakewell tart
Sending your loved one a sweet treat is a good gesture of affection. Let them know that you remember them today by gifting them a Bakewell tart right to their doorstep!
5 Interesting Facts About Bakewell And Its Tarts
The rise of Gloucester tart
The Gloucester tart is another variant of the Bakewell tart, made of ground rice, raspberry jam, and almonds.
The original recipe
There’s a dispute between three bakeries in Bakewell, with each claiming that they use the original secret recipe.
Bakewell is a popular tourist destination
The tourism industry in the town of Bakewell has skyrocketed since the introduction of the tart.
White Horse Inn was demolished in 1805
It’s impossible to substantiate the claims that the Bakewell pudding was discovered in 1820 because the White Horse Inn was demolished in 1805.
73 Bakewell tart variations
Today, there are about 73 different variations of the Bakewell tart.
Why We Love National Bakewell Tart Day
We love sweets
Who doesn’t love a good dessert? The Bakewell tart is the perfect ending to a delicious meal. Today’s the time to enjoy a delicious bite of this English confection.
It has a long history
The evolution of the Bakewell tart is fascinating. How its date of origin and the owner of the secret recipe are constantly disputed is so interesting to learn.
It encourages people to bake
If you want an excuse to finally take your baking equipment out of the drawer, it’s today! Baking can be fun! It’s one way to decompress and unwind. Nothing’s better than whipping something delicious in your own kitchen.
National Bakewell Tart Day dates