Never bin a bake…
As a massive fan of the Great British Bake Off, I immediately applied for tickets for the new sister show called the Extra Slice and was thrilled when I got some and that I could make and take a bake!
The theme for the week was self-saucing puddings for the signature bake, tiramisu for the technical and a baked Alaska for the ‘show-stopper’. Hmm, all so easily transportable – not!
With some much appreciated help, guidance and advice from the best chef in the world, my mummy of course, we decided a roulade would be a good meringue based dessert (without needing a freezer to get it to the studios) and decided on a lemon and almond roulade with chocolate (essential) decorations. However, I had never made one before. The lemon curd, mascarpone and crème fraîche fillings were simple enough to whip together, but several whats’app messages and photos were exchanged between mother and daughter to make sure the meringue was ‘glossy’ enough and baked to perfection. Then, it was just a case of rolling it up. Easy. I made a note not to ‘score’, or as Ian off the Bake Off did, slice his sponge (albeit not meringue) to roll.
All this was done whilst I was in my gym kit – a missed photo opportunity – but all in the name of balance, as I baked prior to heading to the gym!
Off we went to the London studios. A member of the Extra Slice team assessed the roulade, but sadly we didn’t cut it to be on TV and were seated above the tables. Once sworn to secrecy, we watched the following week’s episode (4). Jess and I decided to cut it in a different sense and tucked in to our roulade. It was clear it wasn’t going to be wanted for the show now. Embarrassingly, once the viewing had finished, a runner came and asked for more bakes and looked rather disapprovingly at us enjoying ours. Amazingly he decided they could still tidy it up and would pop it on a table. The warm-up guy started and again rather embarrassingly, noticed the fork still in my hand! Having now watched the show the roulade still did not made the final cut.
I enjoyed seeing Roisin Conaty back after being on the panel during week 1, as she is a girl after my own heart and just wanted to come and eat more cake. As the week was based around meringue, she wasn’t so impressed with all the ‘air’!
One member of the audience had burnt his hand making his bake, with which I empathised with (as a clumsy clot too) and he held up his bandaged hand rather bashfully. Roisin Conarty was about to tuck into the group of three ‘students’ at the front’s sort of pancake/pizza/cake concoction and Jo Brand had someone shouting in her ear ‘do not let her eat it, do not let her eat it – code red code red’ and was trying her best to stop Roisin and her eagerness to try it. The boys looked rather put out and are probably more so now as their ‘stint’ did not make the final cut either.
A shame to see Iain go and I sympathise with the want to present something perfectly baked. However it is unlikely, had it been me, that I would have thrown it away. I probably would have just sat there and eaten what I had feeling sorry for myself!
A chance to eat/taste everyone else’s bakes would have been great but after two and half hours of recording, the Extra Slice team were ushering us homewards. All in all, great entertainment, some great and not so great bakes and a very enjoyable afternoon.