So tonight’s the big night… One of the biggest nights of the year for many of us Brits… And no I’m not talking about Halloween. Tonight is The Great British Bake-Off Final! And Despite my bitterness over Liam leaving the tent 2 weeks ago, I will still be in my PJs in front of the TV at 8pm on the dot ready for the big event!
But at 9:15 when the winner is crowned and the show comes to an end for another year, then what!? Where are we supposed to get our weekly baking fix!?
Well, luckily for us Londoners, this year the Bake-Off doesn’t have to finish with the season finale. This year we can put everything we have learnt over the last 10 weeks to the test and take part in our very own Bake-Off!
The Big London Bake is located in the gardens of the Castle Pub on Tooting High Street (which F.Y.I. is a very cool pub witch a large, beautiful outdoor area). The tent is a spitting image of the iconic Bake-Off tent, so long-time fans off the show will feel right at home.
Just like GBBO’s technical challenge, you are given a basic set of ingredients, a list of instructions and 90 minutes. However, unlike the GBBO, The Big London Bake allows you to work with a partner to compete against the 9 other teams.
Each month the the Bake changes, with October being the Halloween Bake. The recipe was for a basic sponge filled with creme diplomat and covered in buttercream frosting, however, the cake could be flavoured, coloured and decorated in any way you wanted using a selection of extra ingredients from the ‘creation station’ at the front of the tent. Also unlike the real GBBO, there were people on hand to give a little advice if things weren’t going according to plan (phew!).
Even for someone like me who considers themself an okay baker (I occasionally bake the odd cake at home), being put in the tent with just a recipe and a time limit really makes you appreciate what the GBBO bakers do each week! As you hear those fateful words ‘10 minutes left bakers’, you find yourself sprinting across the tent, flinging fellow contestants out of the way, on the hunt for a clean knife to smooth over your hurriedly applied icing. Who knew baking could be quite so stressful!
Our finished bake consisted of orange flavoured sponge with a chocolate filling and orange and cinnamon buttercream, shaped into a rather unnerving pumpkin (well that’s what Halloween is all about right!?).
Others bakes included a grave, a ghost, a mummy in a coffin and a couple of very artistic chocolate spiderwebs. However, it wasn’t just about the design. Each cake was sampled by 2 judges and a winner was chosen also based on taste. The winning bake was a bright green and black number (below – far left).