Special Coconut & Jam Tarts

My Great Grandma (known to us as Special Granny) was famous for her coconut tarts, served up at Sunday tea alongside homemade sausage rolls, apple turnovers and other delights mostly based on recipes in her well-used Bero cookbook. It was first published in 1923 and she was born in 1910 and was still providing a weekly feast in her 90s (she lived to be 101!) so the book was her kitchen standby all her adult life – as was her signature pinny.

The concept of gluten & dairy free food would have been totally foreign to her, but this is a great example of how you can adapt standard recipes for special diets and not even notice the difference…

So this is for you, Special Gran!

The recipes in the Bero book use homemade shortcrust pastry and make individual tarts in patty tins. Back in my early attempts, I discovered that even the best gluten& dairy free pastry is a bit difficult to handle, so by making one large tart for slicing up I could save time and get a better result (with the bonus of having more of the lovely coconutty topping!)


375g of gluten & dairy free pastry (recipe here)
120g jam, any sort
150g dairy free spread
150g caster sugar
2 large eggs
150g desiccated coconut

A baking tray about 20x30cm


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C, (160C fan), 350F, Gas mark 4.
  2. Roll the chilled pastry on floured baking parchment and transfer into the tin (parchment and all)
  3. Spread the jam into the pastry case
  4. In a mixing bowl, beat the spread and sugar together until light and fluffy – an electric mixer makes this much easier!
  5. Beat the eggs, and add them and the coconut to the mixture in the bowl, and mix well
  6. Spread the mix over the jam in the case
  7. Bake for 35-40 minutes until risen and golden brown.




Super Special Bonus Recipe!

While we are on subject of pastry and coconut, here is a coconut adaptation of another of Gran’s recipes, called  Butter Tarts. The Bero version has no coconut, my version has no butter, and it is a tart, not tarts.

Other than that, it is just as Gran made!

You use the same pastry, the same tin and the same lining the tin and chilling bit as for the coconut tart recipe.


375g gluten free pastry (recipe here)
75g dairy free spread
300g mixed fruit
200g demerara sugar
100 g desiccated coconut
2 large eggs
Few drops vanilla extract


  1. Heat the oven to 200C, (180C fan), 400F, Gas mark 6.
  2. Beat the eggs, then in a mixing bowl, stir all the ingredients together until they are well combined
  3. Fill the pastry with the mix
  4. Bake for 30 minutes, until golden brown, and firm in the middle

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