Contestants participate in three challenges every week and are in turn judged on the items they bake. The challenges are: a signature bake where they show off their personality and tried-and-true recipes, a technical bake where they are given a bare-bones recipe and must depend on their own baking knowledge to fill in the gaps, and a showstopper bake where the contestants are expected to go all-out in taste, concept, and design. The bakers have one week to test and prepare for the signature and the showstopper bakes, but the technical bake is always done blind.
The judges are Mary Berry, a British food writer and television presenter, and Paul Hollywood, a British celebrity chef and artisan baker.
The show is filmed at Welford Park in Berkshire and takes place under a tent surrounded by buttercups and frolicking sheep and has been decorated as the epitome of a charming English country kitchen.
Aside from the beautiful set and amazing baked goods, the overall feeling of the show is very positive. The contestants are not catty or rude to one another - in fact they often help and support each other. It is so refreshing to watch a "reality" television show where people are treating each other kindly! If you love British television, I dare you not to fall in love with this show.
When (yes, it's a matter of "when" and not "if") this show makes you want to go into your kitchen and start whipping up marzipan, buttercream frosting, lemon curd, and madeira cakes, we have the perfect cookbook for you. Pick up "Sprinklebakes" by Heather Baird. This comprehensive book covers nearly every element in the show and will surely compliment you on your quest for the perfect meringue.
On your mark, get set, bake!
Place "Sprinklebakes" on hold today!
The Great British Baking Show will be available on DVD in April 2017.
Reviewed by Dacy