If you’ve not yet discovered the thrill of the Great British Bake Off, then this season is the perfect time to find out what’s got the UK glued to its seats. The series returned to Channel 4 on 28th August at 8pm and is on every Tuesday. Here’s what you need to know.
What’s the Show About?
Bake Off, as it’s affectionately known, is a baking competition which sees twelve keen and brilliant aspiring amateur bakers compete in a series of challenges each week. Each episode involves three rounds of different challenges. The first is a signature bake challenge, which requires everyone to make the same recipe – but with practice time to perfect the results beforehand. The second is a technical challenge. This is a surprise round, where everyone receives the same simple instructions but has no practice time. The final – and perhaps most exciting round – is the Showstopper – where competitors bake any themed item that they like. The judges set the theme each week, and it’s so far included things such as ‘forgotten bakes’, historical periods and cookies.
Other Things to Know
The show is famously held in a garden tent, and the presenters are known for their cheeky British humour. The team has changed over the various series, with Mary Berry perhaps being the most famous of the previous presenting team. The current line-up features Sandi Toksvig, Noel Fielding, Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith, and this series will be a little different from the previous year’s, with a return to simpler formats that allow viewers at home to try more of the recipes. One of the big aims of the show is to encourage its viewers to get into the kitchen themselves and to try baking – and so far this year, it seems to be working. The baking bug is stronger than ever, and this is evidenced by the fantastic ranges of baking items now available across your favourite online stores.
3 Key Bake Off Facts
- If Paul Hollywood offers you a handshake, take it! Receiving a Hollywood handshake is akin to finding a dishwasher loading Golden Retriever; it just doesn’t happen unless you put copious hours of training in. He only dishes these out to the bakers producing the most perfect version of the challenge so, if he offers you his hand, you know you’ve earned it!
- You probably won’t have heard of half of what they make. Don’t sweat it if you don’t know your Religieuse a l’ancienne from your Mokatines (nope, us neither). Normally the bakers themselves are just as baffled, but all will become clear.
- Emotional. Rollercoaster. We’re not joking. Even the coldest of hearts can be thawed seeing a tower of meringue plummet to an untimely demise after a 6-hour bake.
Develop Your Own Baking Passion
Why not peruse your favourite stores for baking inspiration when you shop online and buy through Give As You Live to raise vital funds for the charities that you feel passionate about? Whether you are buying a set of designer mixing bowls from John Lewis & Partners or a funky one-off apron from Etsy, you’ll see exactly what percentage of your spend will be passed on to the charity that you nominate. Simply click through and see the funds mount up! It takes just a few minutes to set up your account and costs you nothing either – meaning that you can enjoy your baking passion whilst doing good at the same time without spending any extra.
What will you bake next after this week’s episode of the Great British Bake Off?