A Cake Lover's Recipe Notebook
‘Slices’ have always had an air of bakery poshness, even though they are one of the most widely available baked treats of all. This one is the first cousin of the Bakewell tart.
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You Will Need
Begin by making the shortbread base which needs to be chilled
before baking. Put the flour, almonds and sugar into a bowl. Add the
butter and rub it in with your fingertips until the mixture resembles
large breadcrumbs. Add the egg. With a knife or your hand, mix well
to bring the ingredients together into a soft, sticky dough.
Press the dough out in the tin (pan) so that it is evenly distributed,
making sure you push it into the corners and out to the edges. Prick
the dough all over with a fork (about 12–16 times), cover with clingfilm (plastic wrap) and chill in the fridge for at least 1 hour. Before you take it out, preheat the oven to 180°C (gas mark 4 or 350°F).
Bake the shortbread base in the preheated oven for 15–20 minutes
until it is dry and just beginning to change colour, but do not overcook. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for 10–15 minutes. Leave the oven on if you are continuing with the recipe. If not, turn it off and preheat it again to 180°C (gas mark 4 or 350°F) when you are ready to make the topping.
While the base is cooling, make the frangipane topping. Put the
butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl. With a wooden spoon or an
electric whisk, cream them together until they are pale and fluffy. Add the eggs one by one, beating well after each addition. Add the ground almonds and flour. With a large metal spoon, fold in gently until the ingredients are thoroughly and evenly mixed.
Spread raspberry jam over the shortbread base. Then spread the
frangipane mix to cover the jam. Do this very gently and carefully to
avoid mixing them. The topping will spread a little during baking, so it doesn’t matter if it is uneven. Sprinkle with flaked (slivered) almonds.
Bake in the preheated oven for 22–25 minutes until risen and golden
brown. Test with a metal skewer or sharp knife: if it comes out clean the almond slice is done. Transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool completely before removing from the tin (pan). To remove, cut into 16–20 slices with a sharp knife or bread knife. Carefully lift out a slice with a palette knife. Once one slice has been removed, it’s easy to lift out the rest.
STORAGE: Almond slices will keep well for up to 3 days if wrapped
in foil and stored in an airtight tin in a cool place.