Sunday 17 December 2017

Sixth baker leaves the tent after poor pastry in the Bake Off

There were plenty of soggy bottoms in the tent this week, but who was booted from the show?

The Great British Bake Off
The Great British Bake Off

By Lucy Mapstone, Press Association Deputy Entertainment Editor

The Great British Bake Off’s Julia has said she knew she “would not win or get to the final” as she became the sixth baker eliminated from the competition.

The 21-year-old from Russia, who lives in West Sussex with her husband, failed to impress judges Prue Leith and Paul Hollywood with her three creations for pastry week.

The signature challenge, which saw the seven remaining bakers tasked with creating four savoury shortcrust pies, was Julia’s first downfall.

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The Great British Bake Off

She included baking powder in her pastry, dubbed a “mistake” by Leith.

She came in last place in the technical challenge, her pasteis de nata – Portuguese custard tarts – resembling shortcrust pastry rather than the desired flaky pastry.

In the showstopper round, Julia’s hand-raised pie with a hot water crust pastry base received criticism from both Hollywood and Leith.

They said her effort could have been neater, that the pastry was undercooked and that her shredded chicken filling was dry.

As she was announced the latest casualty of the Bake Off, presenter Sandi Toksvig became emotional and hugged Julia.

Toksvig told her: “I am so sorry, sorry sweetheart. You did amazing. You know that, right? You did incredible.”

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The Great British Bake Off

Following her exit from the programme, Julia said: “I knew that I wouldn’t win or get to the final, but I enjoyed every week, and to get to over half way through the series is something I am really grateful for.

“I enjoyed every minute of it, and I would love to do it again now I have the knowledge of how it all works!”

Julia said that being named Star Baker during bread week was her highlight in the tent, and that she enjoyed getting to know Toksvig and her co-presenter Noel Fielding.

She said: “They always made me laugh and we were always on the same wavelength.

“We just got each other, and I think I made them laugh too, it was so comfortable I felt like I had known them both for a long time.

“Sandi was like my mum and I really loved her, she was so incredibly supportive.”

Julia said her family back at home in Russia have not yet been able to watch her progress on the Channel 4 show as they do not speak English, but that “hopefully I will be able to take some DVDs of the show so they can see it”.

She added: “My husband Matt’s family have of course been able to watch it, and his nan cries each week, and was in pieces the night I left.

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The Great British Bake Off

“They have been so incredibly supportive, and that means so much to me.

“My husband Matt has been my rock, he is the one who has always believed in me. I would have gone crazy without him!”

Liam, 19, was named Star Baker for his efforts in pastry week, his first time with the accolade.

Leith praised Liam, this year’s youngest baker, as being a “genius”, particularly with his flavours.

The Great British Bake Off continues on Tuesday at 8pm on Channel 4.

Press Association

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