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Tips

Blind baking a pastry case means to half or completely bake it before adding the filling, which will stop the bottom from getting soggy.

– Prick the base of the pastry case with a fork.
– Chill in the refrigerator for 15 minutes; this will help to stop it from shrinking during baking.
– Place a large piece of nonstick baking paper over the base and sides of the pastry.
– Fill the base with baking beans – these are available from the cookware department of large department stores, specialist cookware shops and some larger supermarkets.
– Bake in a preheated oven, 180C (fan 160C/350F/gas mark 4) for 10-15 minutes for a large tart or 8-10 minutes for individual tarts, or until the case is just set.
– Remove the paper and beans and cook for a further 10 minutes for a large tart or 4-5 minutes for individual tarts, or until the base is dry and crisp and the top edges of the tart are golden.
– Leave in the tin and continue with your chosen recipe.