Series 1 · Episode 5
Our eight remaining bakers have reached the halfway point in the competition – and what better to celebrate than bake with chocolate. Last week, Angela’s fruity showstopper won her the title of Star Baker for a second time. But for Janice, her time in the Bake Off Shed came to an end.
This week, our bakers will take on a classic Signature of brownies, a frustrating technical of the legendary Black Forest Gateau and a triple threat Showstopper Chocolate Medley which must be made up of three different types of chocolate.
Mel and Claire kick off chocolate week by handing down the Signature challenge, telling the bakers they must make a tray of brownies. They must be sweet in flavour, single layered or marbled and they must be removed from the tray and cut into exact portions in a 90 minute timeframe.
When it comes to brownies, judge Matt is a bit of a traditionalist and believes bakers do not need to reinvent the wheel. He loves crunchy on top, rich in chocolate and nice and gooey. Maggie, on the other hand, is not traditional at all, which is good news for James. Saying that life isn’t meant to be about playing it safe, James is making a chocolate brownie infused with miso powder.
Angela is adding pecans and cranberries to her brownies, topping them with a salted caramel sauce and decorated with a salted caramel buttercream. Has Jasmin bitten off more than she can chew with her Layered Brownie. Her extravagant brownies will have five layers – a chocolate shortbread base, then a layer of caramel, a layer of ganache topped with pecans.
Next up is the Technical challenge, and what a challenge this one is – Matt’s Black Forest Gateau. Matt hands down the challenge, telling the bakers its his favourite gateau of all. Dauntingly, Matt has decided that the recipe is so difficult that he will give them the complete recipe with a tight timeframe of two and a half hours to bake the complex gateau.
A gateau is a layer cake filled with cake and fruit. Matt’s Black Forest Gateau, however, has four layers of kirsch soaked sponge, filled with a cherry gel, white chocolate mousse and morello cherries, and is covered with chocolate shards. The pressure is on for the bakers. Matt is looking for consistency between the layers and a well-made sponge. The judges blind taste the cakes in front of the bakers and then rank them 8-1.
The bakers now embark on their fifth Showstopper challenge. Matt and Maggie would like the bakers to make a chocolate centerpiece using three kinds of chocolate – white, milk and dark – in four hours.
Matt wants to see something that will take his breathe away and Maggie wants the flavours to sing.
Sian is setting the bar high, making her own chestnut puree in a cake she’s called Tri Chocolate and Chestnut Yule Log. Her puree will be combined in a white chocolate mousse inside a Swiss roll, decorated to look like a fallen tree branch complete with meringue mushrooms, fondant leaves and handmade truffles.
James is also living dangerously, making a black forest cake – he hopes he can out-do Matt Moran’s gateau in the technical bake. His interpretation will have the classic cherry and chocolate cake, but it will also be surrounded by tempered chocolate trees, choux swans and a little biscuit house.
It’s time for the Maggie and Matt to taste the eight wild inventions, deciding who will be this week’s Star Baker and who will be leaving the Bake Off Shed.
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