We’re four weeks into the current series of The Great British Bake Off and so far there’s been plenty of Hollywood handshakes, heavenly (and hellish) bakes and heatwaves in the Bake Off tent.
This week the bakers faced Dessert Week, so still stressed- only backwards!
DISCLAIMER: SPOILERS FOR THE GREAT BRITISH BAKE OFF, SERIES NINE EPISODE FOUR, AHEAD!
This week, the boys impressed. As usual, Rahul was unaware (and completely modest) of how good he actually is. Jon brought colour to the tent with (another of) his mad shirts (and a tutu when he presented his Showstopper) as well as great flavours and brilliant bakes. Dan, who I’m tipping to win at the moment (sorry Ruby!), showed the judges (and the other bakers) that he’s one to watch- again earning himself the coveted Hollywood handshake.
Dessert Week began with the Signature Challenge, in which the nine remaining bakers were asked to make a roulade with a perfect swirl and a melt-in-the-mouth meringue.
This challenge produced a variety of results, a cherry liqour spiked roulade, a ‘dream’ inspired roulade and a roulade inspired by one of the bakers spending a lot of time in the Florida Keys. There was one handshake worthy offering and plenty lacking the signature swirl.
Next up came the Technical Challenge which saw the bakers make a raspberry blancmange (which I’m luckily too young to remember ever eating and, to be fair, wouldn’t want to anyway!) and 12 Langues De Chat biscuits (that’s cat’s tongue, for non-French folk like me!). This challenge put the ‘stressed’ in ‘desserts’, let me tell you! The bakers found themselves in a tailspin over the troublesome technical, with a few melting moments turning the baker’s blancmange from a wobbling wonder to a weeping wet thing- luckily some bakers had the biscuits to redeem themselves, even just a little bit! After that I probably wouldn’t attempt a blancmange, as I wouldn’t subject my parents to what they’d say should only be reserved for school dinners (or, in my Mum’s case, the dog should eat it and throw it up later!).. but I’d be tempted to make the biscuits, as they looked delicious and (to be fair) everything sounds better in French!
For the bakers final challenge, the Showstopper Challenge, the bakers were asked to make a dessert with a twist. What was the twist, I hear you ask? The twist, eager reader, was that the baker’s chosen dessert had to be hidden by a magnificent chocolate globe which the baker’s would melt (using a sauce) to reveal their dessert. Yes, it was as exciting as I make it sound! This challenge brought my stress levels (and my chance of catching diabetes through my TV screen, which I’m glad isn’t a thing) up a lot as the bakers raced to create their chocolate masterpieces. Due to the troublesome nature of chocolate, and the fact that the UK was enjoying a heatwave at the time (so writing this post looking out at a grey sky and crazy wind is even more depressing), some of the bakers found themselves in trouble- with some desserts melting before the big reveal. Other bakers triumphed in this challenge, especially in making me really hungry for chocolate and dessert…at the same time!
When it came to the reveal this week, Rahul stepped down as Star Baker (for now) in favour of another man- ‘Dan The Man’, who wowed the judges and earned himself yet another Hollywood Handshake.
Of course, that wasn’t the shock of the episode. Terry, who has given varied performances so far, was too ill to compete this week. As well as meaning the episode wasn’t full of comedy gold, this had an affect on the end result as nobody (yes, nobody) went home.
This meant that the girls (mainly Karen and Briony, though Kim-Joy was in a compromising position pre-Showstopper) could breath a sigh of relief….and make sure they work extra hard next week not to be the Baker (or Bakers!) to go home!
I think, judging by this week, there’s going to be a male winner this year (the first since Series 3’s winner John Whaite). Although, anything could happen between now and the final- it’s so exciting!
Next week, the Bakers are ‘spicing up their lives’ with the tent’s first ever Spice Week.
This week, I went back to basics with butterfly wing cakes so the recipe will be up on Sunday!
What did you think of the episode?