16th October 2022

Bake Off is Back

Britain’s favourite baking show is back and already proving (no pun intended) to be an enthralling watch
Bake Off is Back
Photo: Mark Bourdillon @ Love Productions

Returning for its thirteenth series, The Great British Bake Off‘s complex challenges, chaotic contestants, and, of course, corny jokes, guarantee fans won’t be disappointed. Here’s the rundown so far.

Kicking off the first show with Cake Week, we saw the return of Paul Hollywood’s frosty-eyed stare, Prue Leith’s whacky outfits, and the questionably funny presenters, Noel Fielding and Matt Lucas.

Week one’s showstopper challenge was a genius way of introducing us to the twelve new amateur bakers. They were asked to create a replica of their home out of cake. Their use of international flavours and spices showcased the contestants diverse backgrounds.

Abdul used masala chai sponge to replicate his grandparents’ home in Pakistan, while Miasma took inspiration from the lemon trees surrounding her childhood home in Libya.

Moving onto week two, Biscuit Week,  the showstopper challenge was just as dimensional and demanding. The bakers were asked to create a 3D biscuit mask that would be able to stand upright. Viewers held their breath as the bakers’ shaky hands struggled to balance their masterpieces on the stands.

I’m still recovering from Carole’s heart break when her mask cracked in the final minute. Oh Carole, why did you put so much lard in your biscuit? Why?

We entered Paul’s territory in the next show with Bread Week, where Abdul and Reb’s absence saved the rest of the contestants from facing elimination. The technical, or mystery, challenge, sparked controversy after the contestants were asked to make pain au raisins filled with crème pât.

The British public were outraged by these beauties making an appearance in bread week – everyone knows that patisseries belong in pastry week!

This was followed by another contentious technical challenge in week four – the first ever Mexican Week on Bake Off! The contestants were asked to make a classic Mexican dish: tacos with fillings, eight to be precise. The difficulty was spiced up (literally) in the tent as the bakers were given minimal instructions, such as “make the salsa” and “marinade the steak”.

Once again, pedantic fans were incensed when they witnessed cooking taking place on a baking show. It’s blatant baking blasphemy at this point!

So far, we’ve had to say goodbye to Will, Maisam, Rebs and James, but who will be next to go?

Well, the hierarchy among the contestants is pretty evident this year, with Maxy and Janusz both winning star baker twice. Janusz has become favourite to win. Not only are his bakes breathtaking, but his bubbly personality and cheeky smile have won over the public – we must protect this man at all costs.

Syabira and Sandro’s neat presentation and risk-taking flavours make them the next two strongest contestants (side note: Sandro’s bakes are nearly as mouth drooling as he is).

After that, Abdul and Dawn follow, but their lack of consistency places them in the danger zone. Which leaves West Country Carole at the bottom of the pack – her quirky hair and humour have made her a fan favourite, but can her skills keep her in for another week? Keep watching to find out!

The Great British Bake Off airs every Tuesday at 8pm on Channel 4, or catch up on-demand on All 4.

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