There’s nothing like the thought of some buttery, flaky pastry to get our hearts thumping, and week six of The Great British Bake Off delivered pastry by the pie-ful.
Paul and Prue dealt out praise and punishing words with equal measure as the remaining Bake Off contestants faced the dreaded pastry week. There was one notable difference this week though, it was a ‘Prue Pat’ the contestants were after instead of a ‘Hollywood handshake’ after Paul was criticised in the previous episode for being too generous with his hand-outs.
With the seven remaining bakers vying for a chance to stand out amongst the crowd Pastry Week saw all kinds of clever creations from the amateur bakers.
Here’s what they made…
The Great British Bake Off week 6 Signature challenge: Savoury pies
For their first round back in the tent after pudding week the remaining Bake Off contestants were asked to make four savoury pies.
The had two and a half hours to make their pies in, while the rules were that they could make any savoury filling but that their decoration must in some way link them. This little sub-clause made for some very interesting themes.
Paul revealed that he wanted the pies to be connected in some way, saying it was the final flourishes he’d be looking out for – whether that be a few scores of a knife or a beautiful egg wash. However he did warn the hopefuls that the more you play with pastry. The tougher it gets.
And what about the all-important centre? Why Paul wanted that perfect too, of course.
To get the ideal crust for their savoury pies most of the bakers stuck to the classic shortcrust pastry recipe of butter, flour, water and maybe a little lard. There were a couple of rogues however, who spiked their dough with things like eggs or baking powder for added richness or rise.
After getting their pastry spot-on the contestants’ next hurdle was making sure their filling wasn’t too wet. Any moisture in the mix could end up in a dreaded soggy bottom. And you know the judges thing of those…
The Great British Bake Off week 6 Technical challenge: is a secret…
Yep, this week’s technical challenge was so tricky we’re not allowed to reveal it to you before the show airs. Obviously, it was set by Paul…
The Great British Bake Off week 6 Showstopper challenge: Hand raised pies
For their final round on week 6 the bakers were asked to come up with a hand raised pie with hot water crust pastry and a glazed fruit topping. This tricky bake requires a firm pastry case that is able to hold all the pie’s fillings, so that when it’s cut into it looks like a slice of cake, with beautiful layers.
To get the iconic shape the bakers had to form their pastry by hand round a cake tin, before carefully removing the centre to leave the hollow case, ready to bake.
So, all that’s left to do is strap on your aprons and get yourself a nice homemade bake ready for in time for Bake Off (or you know, get yourself something in the supermarket).