THE LAST WORD... ‘ I don’t have much of a sweet tooth … palate’ I bake cakes similar to my
WITH CULT AUSTRALIAN COOK AND THEGREATAUSTRALIANBAKEOFF JUDGE MAGGIE BEER
“I DON’T like cakes. I love pastries and breads and that part of baking. I don’t have much of a sweet tooth, but I love doing something really well and having it come out of the oven. It’s just that I bake cakes similar to my palate.
This show ( The Great Australian Bake Off ) was a very big thing for me. I said no for a long time. And then they finally convinced me because I actually love baking. I don’t like leaving the valley (Beer’s home in South Australia’s Barossa).
I am a micromanager in my own business, so for shooting this I have been dealing with it from afar. I live away from all the hustle and bustle and I’m just me. I miss home, and it’s hard for me to be away for six weeks. The business (Beer’s own) is huge. We have 110 staff. I run product development. So while shooting Bake Off we were doing trials here and there and I am on the phone.
I think I’m one of the luckiest people in the world because people like me and that’s a really nice feeling. I love what I do, I live in a beautiful place, I have a fabulous family, I have lots of ideas.
People talk about age (Beer is 70) and I think, ‘What are they talking about?’.
When do I slow down? Why? I’ve never had a better platform to do things. So long as you’re fit it’s fine. And I have to work at being fit, because I love food too much.
My idea of relaxing is cooking. I pride myself on being described as a cook, because I was never taught to cook.
I’m learning from Matt (fellow GABO judge Matt Moran) and from the contestants on this show. There are three things that I have said, ‘Wow, I’d like to try cooking that’, which is tremendous.
The Cook and the Chef (Beer’s TV series with chef Simon Bryant) finished four years ago, and it’s just repeated and repeated – I think I might even get paid for it, but you don’t do things with the ABC for money. For that show we did four weeks of 40 weeks shooting a year, all in the Barossa. I said after two years I wouldn’t do it again and they convinced me to go a third. Then at the end of three they pleaded, so I did the fourth on the basis they would give me a signed letter and would never ask me again (laughs).
We’d do two episodes a day and from beginning to end I didn’t know what he (Simon) was doing, he didn’t know what I was doing, and we never did another take – we just kept on filming, and did pick-ups. I never knew what was going to come out his mouth.” THE GREAT AUSTRALIAN BAKE OFF TUESDAY, 7.30PM, LIFESTYLE FOOD