Food News

Great British Bake Off: Episode Four Recap

It’s dessert week on GBBO, one of our favourite weeks each year. If you missed tonight’s show, here’s a quick recap…

This week’s signature bake was creme brulee. The bakers were given free reign with regards to flavour, but Paul and Mary banned blowtorches, meaning that the crucial crispy top had to be mastered under the grill. All of the variations on the creme brulee from the remaining bakers sounded, in my opinion, pretty disgusting (dominated by fruit and, in one instance, liquorice), until we reached Paul, whose adult themed brulee consisted of almond liquor and chopped almonds.

Sadly, for a brulee which held such promise, Paul managed to turn his dessert into a scrambled egg concoction with added alcohol, which just looked grim.

Positive comments from Paul and Mary went to (predictably) Ian, even though he apparently added too many pomegranate seeds (nice to see a slight error from Mr Perfect!), Ugne despite her disappointing caramel, and Tamal, whose velvety creme brulee impressed Mary.

Round one to Tamal…and so on to the technical challenge. Mary set this one and, after warning the bakers to read the recipe thoroughly, the identity of the technical challenge was revealed: Spanische Windtorte (or, in English, two types of meringue, cream, strawberries, and raspberries mixed together in a stunning Austrian dessert tower).

From first glance, nobody seemed to have made too many glaring errors, except Sandy, whose disc topping somehow turned into a bent, wonky lid. Paul branded it an ‘interesting’ lid, but the flavours managed to pull it back for Sandy. Meanwhile, Alvin had overcooked his, making the meringue ivory and lacking in its glossy sheen.

The winner of the technical challenge ended up being Paul, making up for his scrambled egg creme brulee.

And so there was all to play for in the showstopper, with nobody really dominating the first two challenges and nobody failing too badly either.

The showstopper required the bakers to make a three-tiered baked cheesecake. Ian decided to experiment with herbs, including mixing together apple and tarragon, whilst Flora bucked the trend by sticking with one flavour: elderflower.

Many of the cheesecake creations looked stunning. Ian’s trio of spicy and herby cheesecakes did look good, and the combination of flavours was massively praised by Paul and Mary. Paul’s cheesecake mixture was overbaked, whilst Flora made a few schoolboy errors in terms of overbaking and failing to use the time properly. Alvin’s tower collapsed, and his time-keeping was called into question.

Sandy’s, however, was an utter disaster. Undercooked and not even with three intact tiers, it was pretty obvious that her errors would send her home this week.

Meanwhile, Tamal’s creation looked amazing. From the sound of it, his cheesecake tower tasted fantastic as well. Given that Tamal did so well with the creme brulee, surely he would be named star baker? Well, no…unbelievably, Ian was named star baker for the third week in a row. There are no words.

Unfortunately it did prove to be Sandy’s time to go and the bubbly baker will be missed from the tent.

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