What’s not to love about bread week? Frantic kneading, dramatic proofing, Paul’s prodding digits (although arguably he shouldn’t be pointing the finger at anyone this week…) and ridiculous constructions. Plus there’s a wholesome air of harvest festival about those shiny plaits and baskets of bread – it’s enough to make you want to hand out dusty tins of pilchards and prehistoric angel delight to the less fortunate. Kneadless to say some will rise to the occasion and others will roll over. For every stand out sourdough there will be an ‘informal’ bread ark, complete with flaccid elephants and bloated giraffes (Val we’re looking at you). Here’s our three to watch this week:
‘Professional’ Steven has been making all the headlines and bagging all the ‘Star Bakers’ so far but we’ve got our beady eye on Sophie. Track cyclist, army officer and trainee stuntwoman she’s been stealthily producing great bakes while bubbling under the radar. She wrote easily the best fortune cookie messages last week, including ‘You’ll get bored of writing fortunes’ and despite claiming her talents lie more in patisserie than boulangerie we’re predicting she’ll have Prue et al doughy eyed over her bread creations.
I think Stacey is a BBC mole. Planted in the tent to cause carnage and destruction. She’s discarded enough half-baked goods in the first two weeks to feed a small country, and decimate Channel 4’s budget, under the ruse of ‘perfectionism’. And she seems one soggy bottom away from flipping out and attacking the tent with an electric whisk. This drive for excellence did result in some amazing looking mallow-filled chocolate biscuits (let’s ignore the glitter) but things could baguette really interesting this week. Think adrenalin fuelled dough pummelling, contestants chained up in bread plaits and Paul’s head in the proving drawer… maybe.
Yes, he’s not a contestant but we’re hoping this is the week the real Noel Fielding stands up. We’re big Fielding fans (as are apparently a new legion of older women) but he’s so far been a bit lacklustre, a touch distracted (possibly by Toksvig’s floral bombers) and not quite sharp enough to stop the yearning for Mel and Sue. The signs are there that he’s up to the task, the gentle ribbing of Hollywood, the odd outstanding pun and he is very good at eating cake. We’ve got our bread fingers crossed this is the week of baguette saber fights with Sandi, more leftfield quips and Noel beginning to shine.
Bake Off: Channel 4 8pm, tonight