Great British Bake Off – episode 3 review


It’s a Paul Hollywood favourite week this week with bread. It’s always a bit funny watching him during bread week, as clearly it is his expertise, but Mary Berry bows to no man and is quite prepared to contradict him if she doesn’t agree with his (usually harsh) view about the standard of the bake.

This week the ten remaining bakers started with their signature bake of 12 rolls using rye flour. Apparently rye flour lacks gluten (so good for those with an intolerance, one imagines), which can make it quite tricky to bake with. Apparently it can also make them quite tricky to be egg-washed, but Paul didn’t explain why to poor Martha … it turns out that rye bread can end up underbaked because a glaze makes it appear more cooked than it is.

Some of the flavour combinations for the rye rolls were extremely creative (we should probably expect no less from the Great British Bake Off contestants) including orange and cardamon, cheese and walnut, and onion and pine nuts. When the rolls finally make it out of the oven, most of them look gorgeous, except Diana’s which Paul quite literally rips apart for looking a mess (she did bake them in flowerpots!).

Kate and Luis both do well in this round, despite neither of them having made a big impact before.

Moving on to the technical challenge, it’s ciabatta time, and lots of bowls of very sloppy dough are poured onto floured worktops in the tent. Top tip from the Bake Off: prove the dough at room temperature, not in the proving drawer (wouldn’t you love to have one of them in your house?). But Kate ends up top of the class again with her top notch ciabatta, and they all move on to the final showstopper challenge of the week: a filled bread centrepiece.

Most people would struggle to sit through the final segment of the show and not want to eat some of those delicious-sounding showstoppers, filled with cheese, meat and fruit (and in Jordan’s case, cheesecake!). However, for many the end results were not as successful as they had hoped.

Martha encased a whole epoisse cheese – famed to be one of the stinkiest cheeses – in her dough and baked it into a sunflower shape, but mucked up the sunflower leaves (stuffed alternately with fig and apricot). Kate – doing so well throughout the weekend – ended up with raw dough inside her bread. Jordan’s strawberry cheesecake was liquid in the middle. However, Luis’ Spanish style crown loaf ends up a big success, and he is ultimately crowned star baker for this week. Jordan leaves the tent, not unexpectedly.

Next week it is dessert week – yummy. However, from the clip at the end of the show it looks like the heat in the tent causes some problems: some poor soul is seen scraping icing back onto their cake with their bare hands … cue disgusted look from Mary (but is that what she’s upset about?) – I cannot wait to see what happens.

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