No soggy bottoms here!!

It's that time of year again.......yep, it's a new series of GBBO and our attention is once again turned to all things baking. Over the next few weeks we will no doubt see some spectacular creations along with the odd bakeoff disaster.  I've always loved baking. It's that fine line between art and science. You can bend the rules slighty, add a teaspoon of creativity here and there, but you can never totally break the rules. Ingredients need to be mixed in a specific order, ratios of fat to flour, solids to liquids are rules that are broken at your peril!

And dare I mention the soggy bottom?? A soggy bottom on a quiche or tart is definitely something you want to avoid and easily avoided by "blind baking". I've found that rice is one of the best things to use in you tart tins as it's relatively cheap and can be used again and again. It also moulds well to the shape of your tarts and holds down the pastry well. Just make sure you line your pastry case well and avoid spillages or you'll be picking rice out of your pastry cases!  Bake your cases at 180ºc, Gas Mark 4 for around 25 mins.

Once you've got you baked cases your ready to fill with delicious fillings. A favourite at the moment is crab and tarragon. They're perfect for a summer picnic or afternoon tea and make good use of our fantastic Newlyn crab. Here's a recipe for crab tarts for you to try (or get us to make it!)

Happy baking! 

Crab & Tarragon Tart

1 12” cooked pastry case

450g white crab meat

200ml milk

400ml cream

5 eggs

Pinch of black pepper and Cornish seasalt

Chopped tarragon

200g leeks

100g grated parmesan

salt & black pepper


  • Sprinkle the crabmeat in the bottom of the pastry case
  • Sauté the leeks in butter and place on top of the crab.
  • Sprinkle with parmesan.
  • Whisk the eggs, cream and milk and season to taste.
  • Sprinke the chopped tarragon over the tart.
  • Pour the mix into the tart shell & bake at 175C for 30 minutes.
  • Leave to cool for 10 minutes before slicing. Serve with a peppery watercress salad.