Saturday, September 12, 2015

The Bake Off Returns

Who doesn't like a competition show. There's drama, tears, back stabbing and Victoria sponge.Yep, the Great British Bake Off is back on the air in America at 7PM on Sundays, thanks to the good people at PBS.It's an informative and fun romp through the various levels of baking. Because it's British to the core, it's not as brutal as some Yank competition shows. It's sort of like a tea- but with bite.

The judges are back - the suave but stingingly honest Paul Hollywood,the sweetly stringent Mary Berry, and the hosts Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc. These two are a comedy duo but have also hosted other English  food shows  such as Light Lunch and Late Lunch.Ms Perkins also was featured with food critic Giles Coren on the Supersizers series where they ate dishes from various centuries. Together this band  creates the perfect blend of serious and funny. The hosts offer encouragement and laughter to stressed out bakers, while Mr. Hollywood and Ms Berry offer advice in a teacher like way similar to Tim Gunn's way on Project Runway. The show is divided into three sections, the signature bake where bakers have to make their own recipes according to a certain theme (such as sponge or pies) the technical which is where they all  must follow one recipe) usually one contributed by  Mr. Hollywood or Ms. Berry) and the show stopper, This last tests the bakers on their skill and talent. All the shows a have a theme, whether, breads, pies, cakes, and biscuits - or cookies here.

Unlike some competition show, the competitors aren't cut throat or even that back stabbing. Maybe it's because they're British and they possess a certain civility there. Like American competitions, the backgrounds are varied. There are no professional bakers here. This season,  Season 5 is just starting here (it's the middle of season 6 in the UK). There is Beca, a Welsh military wife who loves both singing and baking, Ali, from Birmingham is the only baker in his family  and loves to create tarts while Rob is a space satellite designers who has a thing for foraging mushrooms The bakers are as young as 18 such as Ruby and , older more experienced home bakers such as Deborah and Howard. There are ten bakers per season and the final three compete for the title of Britain's best baker. PBS will air the second show tomorrow.The best moment , came from Josh , a baker eliminated  in the very first show. He accidently subbed in salt for sugar in  the technical challenge of angel  food cake. Seeing Mr. Hollywood choke on it was priceless. Sad to say it was one of the reasons josh was voted off.

The Great British Bake Off is a sweet treat on a Sunday night. Watch it for the drama but also  for the great rcipes. It''s a fun and educating race to be the best bakers  the United Kingdom has to offer..

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