30 min


I was invited with 3 ladies of our local Clandestine Cake Club to a filming of the GBBO An Extra Slice and the production team asked us to make something unusual that would stand out. I decided to make this tart with slightly unusual flavour combinations, which was then duly selected to be tasted by the panel.

As one of the panellists was Cherish Finden I nervously awaited her verdict and was thrilled when she said that she liked my tart. Sadly the tasting of the tart didn’t make the final cut but we did have a fantastic day and enjoyed eating our bakes on the train journey back home.

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Strawberry & Lime Tart

For the Pastry
  • 200g plain flour
  • 50g ground almonds
  • 125g unsalted butter, cubed
  • 1 medium egg
For the Sweet Basil Pesto
  • 30g chopped roasted almonds
  • 45g basil
  • 4 tsp lemon juice
  • 3 tsp honey
  • Pinch of salt
  • 80ml light olive oil
  • Pinch of grated lemon rind
For the Lime Custard
  • 5 large eggs
  • 100g caster sugar
  • Grated zest of 2 unwaxed limes
  • 100ml of lime juice
  • 150ml double cream
For the Strawberry Mirror
  • 350g fresh strawberries
  • 40g caster sugar
  • 2 ½ gelatine leaves, soaked for 10 minutes in cold water (see Notes)
In Addition
  • 3 – 4 tbsp chocolate hazelnut spread, I used Nutella
  • A few small strawberries to decorate
  1. For the pastry, place the flour, almonds and butter into a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
  2. Add the egg and pulse again to combine then turn the mixture out onto your worktop and gently bring together.
  3. Wrap the pastry in clingfilm and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan. Grease a 23cm loose-bottomed, 4cm deep tart tin and line the base with baking parchment.
  5. Thinly roll out the pastry into a round a little larger than the base of the tin and use to line the tin (you can freeze any left over pastry, wrapped tightly in cling film and placed in a freezer bag for up to 3 months).
  6. Prick the base of the pastry all over with a fork and chill for 20 minutes.
  7. Place a sheet of baking parchment over the pastry and fill with ceramic baking beans. Bake tart in the preheated oven for 15 minutes. Remove the parchment paper and baking beans and bake for a further 5 minutes until golden brown.
  8. Remove the tart from the oven and leave to cool in the tin.
  9. Reduce the oven temperature to 140C/120C fan.
  10. For the basil pesto, place all the ingredients into a small food processor or use a hand blender and blend until smooth. Spoon the pesto into a piping bag fitted with a large round nozzle and set aside.
  11. For the lime custard, in a large heatproof bowl and with a hand whisk, whisk together the eggs, sugar, lime zest, juice and cream.
  12. Suspend the bowl over a pan of simmering water, making sure the bowl does not touch the water.
  13. Keep stirring the mixture until it feels very warm but not hot. Remove the bowl from the heat and pour the custard into a jug.
  14. Warm the chocolate spread in the microwave for 10 seconds to soften slightly and spread over the base of the tart case.
  15. Place the tart on a baking sheet and fill with half the custard mixture. Gently place the baking sheet with the tart into the oven and carefully fill with the remaining custard to about 1 cm under the rim.
  16. Bake for 15 – 20 minutes until just set. Remove the tart form the oven and leave to cool in the tin.
  17. To make the strawberry mirror, puree the strawberries with the sugar using a hand blender.
  18. Heat 60ml of the puree to hot but not boiling and add the squeezed out gelatine. Stir until dissolved. Stir 2 – 3 tbsp of the strawberry puree into the gelatine mixture then add the gelatine mixture to the strawberry puree and stir to combine.
  19. Pipe the pesto in a spiral over the lime filling and smooth with a pallet knife.
  20. Carefully pour over the strawberry mixture and place in the fridge for a minimum of 4 hours or until set.
  21. Remove the tart form the tin and decorate with strawberries and sprigs of basil.

Note: I have used Dr. Oetker Diamond Leaf Gelatine. If you are using a different brand, please refer to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Here is a grainy photo of the inside of the tart after the panel tried it.


The ladies of the Clandestine Cake Club and I.


Here we are with the lovely Cherish Finden.


A little chat on Twitter with Chris Addison who was also on the panel.

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