Bake Off series is going to be just great
The Olympics are almost over, so now it’s time for another prestigious competition to begin - the hunt for Britain’s best amateur baker (The Great British Bake Off, Wednesday,BBC1, 8pm). And this one involves a lot more cake...
Last year’s Great British Bake Off was the most successful series to date, with more than 13 million viewers tuning in to watch Nadiya Hussain take the trophy. It also provided plenty of talking points, including Paul Jagger’s amazingbread lion, which won a special commendation from judge Paul Hollywood, a man who isn’t known for being easily impressed.
So will the latest run be able to top it? Well, the signs are promising as it seems that after six series of making double en ten dr es and consoling contestants about their soggy bottoms, this time around, presenter MelGi ed royc has caught the baking bug herself.
She told Prima Maga- zine: “For the first time this year, I have actually done some!
“Paul gave us a good recipe for no-knead bread and Sue showed me how to make soda bread. Cake-wise, we made a pineapple upsidedown sponge, which was a bit of a hit with the crew. And I really loved making it .”
In fact, she enjoyed it so much that she’s admitted that she’s discussed opening up a teashop with copresenter Sue Perkins once Bake Off is finished.
That won’t be for a while yet though, asthenewseries gets underway and we meet the dozen bakers who will be hoping to wow us with their pastry.
Every year, the standard seems to get higher, and judges Paul and Mary Berry have come up with 30 new challenges designed to test their technical knowhow and creative flair. From bread to biscuits, and high-end patisserie to store cupboard classics via beautiful botanical creations, the class of 2016 will have to prove they can do it all.
In the first edition, thefocus is on cakes as Paul and Mary take the hopefuls back to basics by asking them to whip up a British classic in the signature challenge. However, we shouldn’ t take that to mean that the contestants are being eased in gently, as the judges will be as exacting as ever.
Then it’s on to the dreaded technical challenge, which sees them getting to grips with f atless sponges and tricky chocolate work as they attempt to make a popular little cake.
Finally, i t’s the showstopper, which gives them a chance to really impress - but Paul and Mary are looking for perfection, and someone has to go home...
If that’s not quite enough Bake Off action for one week, the episode is followed by The Chronicles of Nadiya, which sees the reigning champion going back to her family’s roots in Bangladesh, where she shares some of her favourite recipes.
Then on Friday, BBC Two brings us The Great British Bake Off: An Extra Slice, as Jo Brand looks at some of the highlights - and lowlights - of the first edition, and chats to the first baker to be evicted from the tent.