Wedding Cake Alternative – Scrumptious Tarts

The wedding cake may be one of the most exciting parts of the wedding to plan, mainly because it should involve taste testing. However wedding cakes do not come cheap. Bride’s magazine quoted in 2013 that the average amount their readers were spending on cakes was £296 which is a hefty price tag to pay if the budget is tight. Marks and Spencer and Waitrose have started to offer a more affordable ‘off the shelf’ solution but that can still set you back a bit.

If you do have a love for baking or someone in the family could help, there are a few different variations that could be homemade instead of the traditional wedding cake, maybe your favourite desert on a larger scale?

I am following a Mary Berry Recipe to make a Lemon Tart which I think could be a great unconventional wedding treat. This recipe served about 15 people so may be more preferable for a smaller wedding or you could make mini individual versions. The great thing about this is it can be made a couple of days in advance or the case can be frozen.

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INGREDIENTS

PASTRY

  • 225g plain flour
  • 150g cold butter, cut into small cubes
  • 25g icing sugar
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 2 tbsp water

LEMON FILLING

  • 9 large eggs
  • 300ml double cream
  • 350g caster sugar
  • finely grated zest and juice of 6 large lemons

INSTRUCTIONS

SERVES 8

  1. You will need a 28cm deep loose-bottomed tart tin.
  2. To make the pastry, measure the flour, butter and sugar into a processor. Whiz until the mixture looks like breadcrumbs and then add the egg and water. Whiz again until it forms a ball.
  3. Roll out the pastry thinly on a floured work surface until it is just a little bigger than the size of the tin. Line the tart tin with the pastry, letting the extra pastry hang over the sides of the tin. Place on a baking sheet and then chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  4. Peheat the oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Line the tin with nonstick paper and fill with baking beans. Blind bake for 15 minutes in the preheated oven until pale golden brown.
  5. Take out of the oven and remove the baking beans and paper. Carefully trim the excess pastry from the sides using a sharp knife. Return the empty pastry shell to the oven for another 10-12 minutes or until it is completely dry. Set aside to cool.
  6. Reduce the temperature of the oven to 160C/140C fan/gas 3.
  7. Measure all the filling ingredients into a bowl and whisk until smooth. Carefully pour the filling mixture into the cold baked pastry case.
  8. Transfer the tart and tray carefully to the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes or until just set but still with a slight wobble in the middle. The filling will sink down a bit when it has cooled.
  9. Leave to cool a little, or completely, and then remove it from the tin.

I promise you it will go down a treat…

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L+R