Following a strong start from most contestants last week it seemed inevitable that, in week two, some would crumble… Yes, it was biscuit week.
The show started with its signature challenge: sandwich biscuits.
The contestants seemed in their element – no sweat, no panic – with Flo happily kneading away and working off her “bingo wings”.
Chris’ “it’s sex isn’t it?” comment to Sandi as she tasted his chocolatey biscuit gave us one of the stranger moments to grace the Bake Off tent. And her response was straight to the point: “Orange.. and sex, maybe, for that filling, I’d be on the turn for you, you never know.”
It’s fun starting to see the contestants’ personalities shine though. At the age of 71, Flo still parties with her girlfriends while sipping cocktails, while Julia told us she moved from Siberia to Crawley. (The Sussex New Town that is also home to British Baker!)
But back to the bakes – and some boozy biccies. Flo’s gin-infused raspberry biscuit looked amazing, but Chris’ chocolate chia seed biscuits with whisky caramel filling proved too rich for the judges.
Merseysider Kate came up with messily iced Titanic biscuits that Paul Hollywood described as “so tough, they’re offering me out for a fight”. A bit harsh, Paul. It was also great to see the others pitch in to help Tom during the final panicky minutes of the challenge.
Next up, fortune cookies. And the expressions on the contestants’ faces as Paul told them, “Don’t fold under the challenge”, certainly indicated considerable unease.
Noel didn’t improve the situation by stating the obvious – that panic was indeed happening among the bakers. Meanwhile, Chris’ downfall was starting to become more apparent as he admitted his fortune cookie looked like a "Cornish pasty”, and, during judging, Prue and Paul were clearly unimpressed with his raw fortune cookie batter.
Contestants did see the funny side of the difficult task, as they were allowed to write their own messages inside. Some favourites were: “Speak your mind for it is… stupid” – I love Yan. Julia went for “Make it count.” Ironically, she wrote it twice, casting doubt on whether, in fact, she could.
The showstopper challenge was one that Bake Off has never experienced before – creating a biscuit board game that was both edible and playable.
This was going to be a crunch test for the bakers as the majority admitted they had never faced anything like this before.
Flo’s flapping stepped up a notch with her unfinished operation biscuit game, while Stacey came up with a ‘Get To School’ game inspired by nagging her kids in the morning to get up for their classes.
Paul and Prue’s faces were a picture when Chris outlined the rules to his ‘Great British Sail Off’ puzzle.
Trainee stuntwoman Sophie – who, along with Steven, already looks destined for the final – offered up a ‘Bakes and Ladders’ creation that was very good, but not enough to win the week.
Steven nailed his showstopper challenge once again, designing a biscuit piece chessboard that was artistically amazing and also tasted good – and he deservedly took home the star baker for the second consecutive week.
But as one triumphs, another must fall, and Chris’ strangely sculpted map of Britain sealed his fate. Chris, we will miss you and your eccentric shirts.
Here’s my predictions based on this week’s episode:
Most likely to win: Steven (followed closely by Sophie)
Who should have been sent home: Chris
Most fun to watch: Flo
Quote of the week: “Today you will mostly poo candy floss” – Sophie’s fortune message