The Great British Bake Off: Episode 2

Week two in the Bake Off tent saw elbows, plaits, tears, and a psychic octopus. We’ve come to expect nothing less.

Bread week on The Great British Bake Off saw the 12 contestants battle breadsticks, mould the perfect English muffin, and stop the show with a decorative loaf.

First, the Signature Challenge. A total of 36 breadsticks were required in equal length (10 inches) and thickness. Despite presentation not being high on the Signature Challenge agenda, Frances displayed her matchstick-themed breadsticks in an oversized matchbox.

A tricky Technical Challenge saw the bakers wrestle with a hot plate as they attempted to produce eight identical English muffins. It was Kimberley who managed to do Paul Hollywood’s recipe proud by testing the heat of the plate with a spare piece of dough. Frances came in second, with student Ruby in third.

As is tradition, we were given a snapshot of history by comedic duo Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc who explained the origin of the rhyme ‘The Muffin Man’. Now we all really know who he is, and where he lives.

With four hours to produce a Showstopper, the contestants were given free rein to craft a creative loaf. Ruby, moving on from her spoilt crème pâtissière from week one, caught Paul’s eye with a white chocolate peacock-shaped loaf, which she hand-kneaded herself.

Despite Rob’s rather unusual decision to make a bread version of Paul the psychic octopus tribute loaf (Football World Cup 2010), he suffered a Mary Berry put-down, as she labelled it “just a white loaf”.

Ruby was named star baker, and Lucy’s determination to keep things simple throughout the two days resulted in her being sent home from the Bake Off tent.

Bring on desserts in week three.

The Great British Bake Off is screened on BBC2 every Tuesday, at 8pm. 

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