Recap: Who Won GBBO 2015?
The reality television final of the year – yes, of course I’m talking about Bake Off – aired last night to record ratings. Here’s our recap of the biggest night of the year so far:
The bid to be crowned Bake Off champion begins with iced buns. One has to wonder if it’s simply for all the naughty Bake Off puns that can be made, but apparently making iced buns is really hard. I wouldn’t know – I buy mine at Greggs.
Mary talks sensually about a good iced bun, making myself and the rest of the country insanely hungry, despite having just eaten dinner. If only Greggs opened late on Wednesdays.
Tamar’s making one citrus marmalade with caramel creme pat bun and another one flavoured with apple and cinnamon. However, he strikes trouble when he tells Paul he won’t be flavouring his icing.
Next we have Ian, who is making elderflower buns with lemon curd after being inspired walking around the glorious Cambridge countryside (I live there too, I’m biased). He’s also making spiced buns with apple jam, meaning he’s decided to make this a lot more difficult by having to make two types of dough. Mary and Paul aren’t convinced he’ll finish in time. The things these star bakers do to show off, eh?
Meanwhile, Nadiya’s decided to vary it up in a way no one has ever wanted by making both regular finger ice buns and small round iced buns. I’ve never seen a round ice bun before, but that sounds smaller, and thus not worth it.
She’s making one batch of nutmeg and cherry iced buns, and another of of cardamom and almond I-don’t-know-what-they-ares.
Indeed, Paul is skeptical. And Mel takes the opportunity to make the obvious joke.
During the remainder of the challenge Ian frets because his buns are taking surprisingly long in the oven and Tamal’s creme pat isn’t cooling quickly enough, so he has to ditch it. Meanwhile Nadiya beautifully pipes her own creme pat. Damn you round bun nay-sayers!
Ian gets the Paul and Mary treatment first and his cardamom creation instantly receives some early disapproval from Paul. Ian comments that he thinks there’s something wrong with them, and Paul helps him realise he forgot to put sugar in the dough.
He forgot to put sugar in the dough.
I’m not much of a baker, but surely this is a CRUCIAL element?
Ian’s second bun is “sheer heaven”, however, according to Mary. Here’s a picture of it. Hungry?
Next up to be judged is Nadiya, and despite her buns being really quite lovely to look at, Paul still isn’t convinced… “normally there’s rips,” he says.
However, he finds no fault in them taste-wise, so we move onto Tamal.
Tamal’s icing doesn’t have enough of a shine, and Paul tells Tamal off about his timing and the shame it is they can’t taste the creme pat. It turns out it doesn’t matter though, because Tamal’s “marmalade butty” is delicious, even without the creme pat.
Next it’s the dreaded technical challenge and the contestants have to make a….what.
Wait, let me google how to spell that. It’s safe to say I don’t know what it is.
Okay, it’s a mille-feuille – pronounced mill foy – and it looks hard to make but delicious.
Nadiya correctly susses that the challenge is personalised to the final three due to their poor performances with pastry, while Paul and Mary grin with EVIL GLEE about their cunning choice.
Here are the complete mille-feuilles (yeah, I’m just copying and pasting it now). Guess which one is which?
Tamal’s pastry is a problem and has collapsed, due to his failure to understand that ‘grate the butter’ does not mean ‘form butter into a block’. He’s also not used his sugar syrup where he should have.
Nadiya does fairly well, while Ian’s looks big and impressive to me but apparently is not up to scratch either.
Nadiya wins, meaning she is yet again the technical queen. Ian comes second and Tamal’s effort sees him last.
Ian and Tamal know they have to do better, while Nadiya’s pretty thrilled. At the moment, Nadiya’s looking like a cert.
The final challenge sounds easy – a classic British cake. Even I can do that. They better look phenomenal to wow me.
Tamar’s making a sticky toffee…fruitcake. Okay, that sounds delicious, if weird. He’s going to decorate his classic British cake by creating an abandoned Chinese fishing village.
The finale interviews with contestants’ families begin with Tamal’s sister, who taught him how to bake and is very tearful over his success. Here’s baby Tamal – aww!
She says: “He’s the full package for me. He’s good looking, he’s funny, he’s intelligent.” Then she bursts into tears. It feels like a Bake Off final.
Ian will be trying a more British British cake than Tamal, five carrot cakes to be decorated like one giant carrot. We then meet Ian’s wife and children, and we bear unfortunate witness to the mess that Ian makes in the kitchen practicing for the Bake Off.
Maybe Ian shouldn’t win. I hope Paul and Mary feel guilty about making this poor lady’s kitchen a living hell.
The absolutely adorable Nadiya is making her own wedding cake, because apparently they don’t really do cake in Bangladesh. I guess I won’t be attending any weddings there.
Luckily, Nadiya’s three equally adorable children really really like cake.
And, finally – the showstoppers!
Nadiya’s creation wows Paul and Mary, with Paul calling it “stunning” and telling her to bring a tier out to her probably very proud husband.
Tamar’s creation stuns me, even if Mary can’t quite work out what it is. I suppose that’s fair – but boy does it look good.
Paul’s genuinely surprised that it tastes good too.
Ian, true to his word, has made a giant carrot.
Mary says this cake is very simple, so she’s expecting something magnificent with regards to taste. There’s a tense moment, then Paul says: “That’s one of the best carrot cakes I’ve ever had.”
And with that it’s over. All the cakes are in, all the friends and family and former contestants give Nadiya, Tamal and Ian a round of applause, while Mary and Paul must face the tough job of judging.
There’s talk about Paul in a thong – I didn’t hear, I was too hungry – and then we finally have the winners announcement. And it’s an emotional one.
Crying. Lots of crying. Nadia is crying. Mary is crying. I am crying. I didn’t know she was my favourite until right now. I love her. What an ending.
Here’s her first winner’s speech:
What a hero.