The Great British Bake Off: Victorian
September 17, 2015 7:05 AM - Season 6, Episode 7 - Subscribe

In a Bake Off first, the entire episode is devoted to the period of history that gave birth to modern baking - the Victorian era

The signature challenge is a stalwart of the Victorian dinner table, game pie. Pie moulds, pheasant, pigeon and pastry are the order of the day as the bakers must create beautifully decorated pies, stuffed with all manner of game to tantalise the judges' taste buds. For one it's the chance to use a genuine antique from 1850, while others take a more modern approach and dabble with spices.

Mary dusts off her antique cookbooks to find a technical recipe that dates back to the late 1800s. The bakers battle with time as they must first make a perfect fruit cake, and then create their own sugar paste and marzipan and indulge in some very detailed royal icing in a bid to create a cake that resembles a tennis court.

For the show-stopper, the bakers make charlotte russe, a dessert much loved by the Victorians which has a silky bavarois centre surrounded by sponge fingers and topped with jelly. A tricky construction at the best of the times, but the added pressure of the Bake Off tent takes its toll as not everyone manages to get their jelly to set or the charlotte russe to stay standing. Although one baker does manage to create a masterpiece that even Queen Victoria herself would have found amusing.

description via bbc iplayer
posted by everybody had matching towels (13 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Star baker for Tamal! Finally!

I was sad to see Mat go though I think it was he right choice, and feel increasingly convinced of a Nadiya/Ian/Tamal final.

Tennis cake.

I mean.

That's a made up thing, surely? Who would ever ever actually want to make or eat that?! You can't even google it properly now because it's all bake-off related.
posted by theseldomseenkid at 7:20 AM on September 17, 2015 [3 favorites]

Tennis cake is indeed an actual thing.

I was very sorry to see Matt go. He was lovely. And I really wanted to eat Nadiya's charlotte russe with the mango filling. It looked lovely. Actually, I'd have eaten all of them, I love that kind of trifle-y dessert with a combination of cake, custard and jelly.

I hate Ian with the passion of a thousand burning buns, the smug posh twat. And, er, excuse me, did anyone else spot this? Last week Ian talked about his pet guinea fowl laying eggs. This week he made a pie FILLED WITH GUINEA FOWL!! WTF? Did she stop laying? Did one of them shit on his car? WHERE DID HIS PIE GUINEA FOWL COME FROM?

The only thing that would make Ian even slightly more bearable is if that fucking hipster was still in it.
posted by essexjan at 8:00 AM on September 17, 2015 [4 favorites]

Aww, poor Ian. He doesn't seem that bad!

I'm with you on the charlotte russe though. I would happily surround myself with all of those and stuff my face until I black out.

I'm also strongly anticipating a Nadiya/Ian/Tamal final, though Flora could sneak up there if someone is playing below par next week. Personally I'm on Team Tamal. It's been one of the strongest years IMO, both in technical ability and in general pleasantness, but he's got the mix of ambition and execution.
posted by Magnakai at 2:39 PM on September 17, 2015 [2 favorites]

The look of quiet horror on Nadiya's face when she realised he'd baked his royal icing! He was so lucky he had that hidden under the other marzipan.
posted by dorothyisunderwood at 3:55 PM on September 17, 2015 [4 favorites]

I loved all the things made on this episode. Those charlotte russes looked amazing, particularly Tamal's and Nadiya's. I have never had a game pie, but I have a feeling I would love it, as I love all game pies. Even the tennis cake, I do love a good fruit cake (I know it's strangely unpopular in the US, but I really don't get it). I could do without the stuff on top though.
posted by peacheater at 4:28 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]

I'm also strongly anticipating a Nadiya/Ian/Tamal final, though Flora could sneak up there if someone is playing below par next week.

Same! I really like Flora and I'd like her to get a Star Baker - she's come close a handful of times. She just seems like such a sweet person (though, honestly, they all do. What other reality show has a cast of such genuinely nice people? Or maybe just kind editors, I guess).
posted by everybody had matching towels at 4:37 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]

Mat had a really bad week. I really hate gelatine in anything, so for me this was my least appealing week in terms of food I'd want to eat. I quite enjoy technicals where everyone messes up, which kind of happened this week.
posted by Cannon Fodder at 12:11 AM on September 18, 2015

What other reality show has a cast of such genuinely nice people?

The Great British Sewing Bee. Only in Britain could you put in a prime-time slot a competitive sewing show judged by a Savile Row tailor.
posted by essexjan at 9:32 AM on September 18, 2015 [2 favorites]

I loved all the things made on this episode

Hah, and I was just coming in here to post "man, they really have them doing some weird, unappealing stuff sometimes on this show." For me, fondant and fruitcake is the opposite of chocolate and peanut butter. Though seriously --- and I suppose this gets a pass because it's an authentic historical recipe --- the complicated frosting just slid right off the fruitcake as soon as Paul sliced it. It's literally just a slab of decorative paste atop a cake whose flavours and textures it neither complements nor contrasts. I don't get it, Victorians. Ditto the obsession with gelatin.

Tamal deserved his win this week. Nadiya seems more sure of herself since winning star baker. I too foresee a Nadiya/Ian/Tamal final. Flora is growing on me, though. She's got a certain élan despite her youth --- it's interesting, after five years the show certainly has some slots it seems to aim to fill in its casting, and usually "our youngest baker" is required to show flashes of creative brilliance but be inexperienced and prone to nerves. Flora on the whole has preferred to keep a cool head, pass off any mistakes with a wry comment and has been solidly middle of the pack creatively --- some beautiful presentations, to be sure, but nothing as over the top inventive as Nadiya's soda can or some of Frances' or Luis' decorations in prior years. The time around she did show a bit more nerves and I felt myself warming up to her a bit more, which feels a bit shallow of me, now I think it over.
posted by Diablevert at 10:45 PM on September 18, 2015 [1 favorite]

I really like Ian!
posted by smoke at 10:16 PM on September 19, 2015

I love Flora, I think she could knock definitely Ian out of the final three.

But, poor ol' Paul! No one's talking about him, even to say they hate his guts.
posted by showbiz_liz at 5:13 AM on September 20, 2015

I really like Ian!
I don't mind Ian as much as others seem to. He is a bit of a try-hard, but he seems genuinely nice also. I think it's just that everyone on this show is so likable, he's the closest thing to a villain around.

Still rooting for Tamal though.
posted by peacheater at 5:31 AM on September 20, 2015 [4 favorites]

gelatin was to the Victorians what digital watches were to the 80s
posted by bq at 7:45 PM on August 24, 2016 [2 favorites]

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