Well, it’s finally here – The final of The Great British Bake Off – and in a first the bakers left the tent for a challenge. But let’s start at the beginning, shall we? The final three bakers, Kim-Joy, Rahul and Ruby, entered the tent to attack this week’s signature challenge of… doughnuts. Six ring and six filled, all delicately adorned, fried lumps of deliciousness. Then came the moment where Paul sent the bakers outside of the tent to bake six pitta breads on a campfire along with dips! No ovens and basic utensils! They even had to tend to their fires on their own on one of the summer’s hottest days. Now we all love bake off, but this was a pure gimmick and just silly. Seeing the bakers blowing through a pipe onto their fires made me unnaturally angry. If I was there I would have thrown Paul onto the logs. For their final ever showstopper challenge our finalists had to create a stunning landscape dessert in four and a half hours. To make matters worse Rahul had a glass jar shatter on his workbench meaning he had to start again after a clean-up delay. It was lovely to see Sandi and Paul trying to calm and encourage Rahul.
In a week of yummy choux and flat pittas the highlights were:
Puffy envelopes of the week:
- Kim-Joy’s doughnuts were decorated beautifully and were “nice and light” with “a lovely flavour”.
- Kim-Joy slightly burned her pittas, but they were “quite good”
- Ruby’s magical landscape dessert looked wonderful and mostly tasted great.
- Rahul’s rock garden dessert looked “rough and ready” but it all tasted “lovely” and “excellent”.
Burnt rings of the week:
- Ruby’s decoration was “very clever” but “underfilled” and “boring”
- Rahul’s buttercream decoration was too much.
- Rahul’s pittas were flat.
- Ruby’s caramel on her showstopper was burnt.
- Kim-Joy’s Atlantis dessert was a “missed opportunity” as it “falls a little bit flat”.
Sandi and Noel highlights of the week:
- Noel said Rahul’s doughnuts were “like you would get at a funeral”.
- Sandi and Noel played badminton whilst the bakers stressed behind them.
- Sandi kissing Rahul on the forehead to console him.
And the winner is Rahul. I was slightly surprised as his lack of confidence affected him in the last few weeks but he was consistent this week and he does seem like one of the loveliest people on the planet. Seeing how happy the other bakers were for him brought a tear to my eye.
Bar this week’s gimmicks it’s been another great series on channel 4. As I said last year it does feel like there’s been some new life breathed into the tent with the Noel, Sandi and Prue and this year was even better as they all seemed more relaxed and comfortable in their roles. As always there has been a great mix of bakers and seeing the camaraderie is always one of the best things about bake off and is why I love it so much.
Sadly, that’s it from me for this year. Roll on next year where the bakers will likely have to mill their own flour whilst growing their own peppermint and cloves.