The Great British Bake Off: proof is in the pudding

The nation was served one last slice of mouth-watering The Great British Bake Off action on Tuesday night.

The nation was served one last slice of mouth-watering The Great British Bake Off action on Tuesday night. It was the boys who baked their was to the grand final, and with cake forks half-way to mouths, 6.5 million of us watched nervously to see whose favourite would come out on top. Because no matter how wholesome and cosy the show appears to be, everyone knows there can only be one winner, and the slightest soggy pastry or over-whisked meringue could throw any of the contestants into jeopardy.

So who was going to be your winner? Would it be the constant perfectionist Brendan? I know amongst many he lost favour for his seemingly effortless cooking and attention to detail. Sometimes, it is possible to have too much of a good thing. Or was it James, the experimental Scotsman with a fondness for amazing us with local specialities, and who could forget his amazing strudel? In all honesty, who would have thought underdog John would shine like the gleaming chocolate icing on his last Show Stopper to become the Bake Off Champion?

Always good and always fair, it came down to the contestant’s performances on the day. Judges Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry cast their expert eyes over three very evenly matched golden pithiviers (I didn’t know what they were before either). The tension mounted though as we cringed at attempts to coat fiddly fondant fancies with lurid pink icing. We expected Brendan to rival Mr. Kipling with these tea-time treats, but even he began feeling the pressure as sponge fell off the fork and refused to go on evenly. Despite some tears, I’m sure some of us were still smirking as James was announced to be the winner of what was overall a disappointing last Technical Challenge.

James-fans hearts must have sunk like souffle as the final round was just one cake too many for him. Literally. Setting himself the task of making five cakes for the theme of a United Kingdom, things didn’t go well as he spilt mixture, overbaked and failed at attempting Turkish Delight for the first time. This left Brendan and John to produce cakey towers of perfection for their Show Stoppers. As this point, they had said the word “cake” so many times that I was was quite willing to try whipping up a sachertorte myself.

Because that’s what The Great British Bake Off is about isn’t it? The BBC hit onto a winning formula for a show that refreshes what reality television can be, because everyone can have an opinion on a pie! The proof is in the pudding, excuse the pun, when we take a look at the programme lends itself to cook books just in time for Mum’s Christmas stocking and foreign-formula sales. Apparently, the Swedish Paul Hollywood is just as foxy!

This is definitely my kind of X Factor, and I am certainly looking forward to the extra here’s-how-to-do-it shows with Paul and Mary next week and expect a few familiar faces of previous contestants. Bake Off fans it’s not over yet, there are still a few crumbs on the plate!

Watch The Great British Bake Off Tuesday 23rd October at 8pm on BBC 2.