Wednesday, 12 February 2014

The Great Swift Bake Off

I am sure many of you brits will have picked up on the phenomenon that is "The Great British Bake Off" (bbc link). For those less familiar here's a quick summary: A group of amateur bakers (normaly fairly good ones) compete in rounds of three challenges to avoid elimination by two judges - Mary Berry (cookery guru and the go to cookery book of choice for cakes) and Paul Hollywood (master baker). A colleague and I were discussing this and, partly inspired by a friend who had done something similar, decided we should have an office version.
The office version was not going to entail three challenges per round in a televised kitchen but just a single item of baking. We produced a list of some 25+ challenges we fancied and whittled it down to the following list:

Round 1       Tray Bake
Round 2   24 Biscuits
Round 3   24 Bread Sticks
Round 4   Victoria Sponge
Round 5   12 Sweet Buns
Round 6   1 Family Sized Savory Pie (hot water crust, pork pie or similar)
Round 7  Layered Cake
Round 812 Chocolate Éclairs
Round 924 Petit Fours, 2 types

We have had a surprisingly good take up from a mostly male office. About 25% of the office are competing!

Jen and I would like to throw this open wider: If you fancy the challenge of baking along as the year progresses then post a link to your entry in Mr Linky each month so we can all have a look. This could be a blog / instagram / tweet / flickr / etc - all are welcome!

This month: Tray Bake.
Jen has baked this recipe a few times as a cake but I stole it, tweaked it slightly and did it as a tray bake. The recipe is for a Cider Apple Cake - care of Jennifer and her blog. If you want the recipe do have a look at her site.

The scores are in and I got a close 3rd place (one vote behind joint first). Incentive to work harder for the next one!


  1. It looks so much fun & the cake looks wonderful. I can't join in yet & I want to but the kitchen is still in the process of being renovated & is a shambles.

    1. There's nothing to stop you joining in later in the year though - take each month as it comes. I hope you get the renovations finished soon, a shiny new kitchen sounds exciting :)

  2. Hi,

    All looks very scrummy to me.

    1. Thanks, the top three were all quite close in votes so Joe's office obviously agreed. I certainly enjoyed the offcuts that were left behind!

  3. How wonderful! But sadly I hopeless and can't even make a rice pudding!xxx

    1. I have to admit to never having made a rice pudding and have no concept of how easy or hard that would be ;-)

  4. I am going to have to rummage about looking for a snack even though I am pretty sure I don't have anything as yummy as that.

    1. It was very tasty, but I'm sure you can find something good.


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