Friday 23 February 2018

Bake Off 'just the beginning' as Mr Cool Selasi leaves tent

Selasi said he felt it was his time to go.
Selasi said he felt it was his time to go.

The Great British Bake Off's Selasi Gbormittah has admitted shedding a tear after being the ninth baker to leave the tent, but has promised fans it is just the beginning of his baking journey.

On the morning after Wednesday's semi-final episode was broadcast on BBC One, he posted a heartfelt message on Twitter, sharing his feelings about his experience on the pre-recorded show.

He wrote: "The journey is just beginning. I can finally cry; it's been incredibly overwhelming and humbling.

"Such an honour and proud to have been selected as one of the lucky 12. Entered with a smile and leaving with an even bigger smile and a big slice of cake!

"The GBBO (Great British Bake Off) experience is unreal! I can honestly say I've met a crazy, funny and awesome bunch of guys."

He added that the experience had been a "massive learning curve" and he hoped he had "managed to create some sort of baking influence out there".

In the penultimate episode of the competition, the contestants were tasked with creating a selection of tasty treats under the theme of Patisserie Week.

But the 30-year-old banker failed to impress judges Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood with his creations.

Following the show, he said: "It's a massively great achievement for me personally, and my family, to get to the semi-finals. It's been absolutely amazing, splendid, I loved it all.

"I was almost at the last hurdle, and then I dropped the ball. I can't blame anyone else but myself. I was sorry to be going but also accepted it at the same time."

The famously calm and collected baker said being dubbed "Mr Cool, or the chuckling zen banker" among his fans "does make me smile".

He said he and the other bakers, especially Benjamina Ebuehi, got on well and that "for me it was more about a bunch of people baking in the tent and having a great time, not a competition".

He added: "My best moment in the tent has to be every moment. But when I messed up and tried to blag my way out of it, I can't believe I did that. Now, watching it back I find it really hilarious.

"My worst moment had to be leaving of course, but I think I left at the right time, it was time for me to go. I knew it and felt it."

Hollywood said he was "very proud of Selasi" to get this far, and Berry added that he is a "great character".

Gbormittah's downfall in the semi-final began with the signature challenge, as the four remaining bakers were tasked with creating 24 savoury palmiers with two different flavours.

His salmon, spinach and mushroom, and sun-dried tomato, onion and Parmesan palmiers - constructed with puff pastry - were under-baked, with Berry describing them as "very raw".

The technical challenge required the contestants to construct a ring-shaped yeast drizzle cake called a savarin, but Gbormittah came bottom of the pack for his over-baked effort with disappointing orange segments on top.

His showstopper challenge creation - 36 fondant fancies - was the final straw as Berry and Hollywood confessed they were "not excited" over his flavours or the fondant around the outside of each mini cake.

Aerospace engineer Andrew Smyth, 25, was named Star Baker for the second time during the competition, securing him a place in the final along with Jane Beedle, 61, and Candice Brown, 31.

:: Gbormittah will join Jo Brand on The Great British Bake Off: An Extra Slice at 9.30pm on Friday October 21 on BBC Two. The final of The Great British Bake Off will air at 8pm on Wednesday October 26 on BBC One.

Press Association

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