The Great British Bake Off – Week 2, Bread

And breathe…

Boy am I glad that week 2 of the Bake Off is over!  Bread week was a tough one for me and some of the other bakers, probably because we all wanted to do so well and impress Paul.  In my case, I think I let the pressure of the tent get to me a little too much that week and it threw me off balance.

The Signature Challenge this week was to make 36 breadsticks of any flavour, but they needed to be consistent in bake and size, each needing to be over 10 inches in length.  Having never made breadsticks before this was an interesting challenge to do and one I enjoyed.  All in all, I had good comments; the only negative was that my breadsticks were bendy.  What can I say?  Nothing wrong with a bendy breadstick…shows it has a bit of character!  Paul and Mary liked my Fennel and Chilli flavours and most importantly my breadsticks snapped.  Mission accomplished!

The Technical Challenge was a different story.  We were presented with English Muffins, something that I’d made once before and failed miserably then too!  The trouble with me and the technical bakes so far is that I think I know best, and don’t follow what is written down.  My mistake was not rolling out the dough before cutting it out, I instead flattened the dough out with my hands which gave me an irregular shape, hence leading to me having 2 smaller muffins in the batch, or the runts of the batch!  Oh, and they were under baked!  11/12 it was for me in the technical, so I wasn’t at the very bottom but still in the danger zone.  The thought of possibly having to leave the contest then entered my head, especially as Paul and Mary could get rid of 2 bakers at any time….then I had a little cry, had a good chat with my husband and mother who told me to get a grip and go into the showstopper all guns blazing.

IMG_1580

My perfect batch of muffins that were enjoyed whilst watching Bread week on #gbbo

The final challenge for the weekend was to make a Decorative Shaped Loaf.  The loaf could be sweet or savoury; using any flours we wanted and needed to be shaped in some way.  I decided to make a Christmas Wreath, made from a blend of wholemeal and white flours and flavoured with Sultanas, Cinnamon and Honey.  The wreath was made by plaiting the dough then shaping it into a wreath, which was then decorated with edible decorative dough made from rye flour.  The decorations were some poinsettias, holly leaves and a bow.  In hindsight, I should have made the loaf smaller then it may not have stuck to the bloody tray!!  The judges liked how it looked and tasted, but unfortunately for me it was under baked…if it hadn’t stuck to the tray, my intention was to put it back into the oven for a further 10 minutes then it may not have been under baked, but we’ll never know!!

Anyway – the good news is that I’m through to next week…Woo-Hoo!  Next week’s challenges are all to do with Desserts; including trifle, floating islands as the technical and Petit Fours for the showstopper challenge…it’s going to be another good one!

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8 responses to “The Great British Bake Off – Week 2, Bread

    • Hi Vivien!
      Thank you, Richard is indeed a brilliant teacher and I thoroughly enjoyed my one day bread course I did at his school. That method has given me confidence to knead so many different types of dough by hand and his enthusiasm for bread is very addictive! Hope you’re enjoying the show, next week is another good one!
      Beca x

  1. I have to confess that I was on the edge of my seat while you tried to get the wreath off the tray…. shouting at the tv *come on Beca!!*

    Looking forward to watching next weeks challenges!!

  2. I loved the look of your breadsticks. Rustic and authentic!
    I’m taking a special interest in your progress as we are having a sweepstake at Cake Club as to the GBBO winner and I have you. Don’t let me down… 🙂

    • Thank you! I’ve only ever eaten perfect breadsticks out of a packet…nothing wrong with a bendy one, makes is easier to scoop up some dip!!
      Enjoy next week’s show, it’s another goodie!
      Beca x

    • Thank you!! It is a bit mental, especially trying to balance it all with normal life!! It’s like a little bake off bubble that you never want to get popped!

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