The classic Bakewell tart, with its layers of short crust pastry, jam, frangipane and icing, hails from the town of Bakewell in Derbyshire, England. While its origins may be the source of some contention, most such arguments fade over a cup of tea and a warm slice.
Category: technical challenge
Dampfnudel, literally translated "steam noodle," is more like a dumpling than a noodle. They can be sweet or savory, but these are made with an enriched dough scented with lemon zest and served with two sauces, créme anglaise and a sweetened plum sauce.
Viennese whirls, though not Viennese, were probably inspired by Spritzgebäck, a German butter cookie that's extruded through a cookie press. But Viennese whirls take butter cookies to the next level, with a swirl of buttercream and a spoonful of jam sandwiched between two melt-in-your-mouth cookies!
Is the Jaffa cake a biscuit (i.e. cookie) or a cake? That was the subject of a 1991 court case, but you can decide for yourself if you make your own! These chocolate-covered mini-cakes with an orange center are made from Mary Berry's recipe, which was the technical challenge during Biscuit Week in GBBO 2016.
“A thousand leaves.” That’s the literal translation of mille-feuille. While its elements seem relatively simple, this delicate pastry is greater than the sum of its parts. The beauty of a mille-feuille is in the perfection of each layer, from the crispy, flaky pastry to the silky smooth cream. This technical challenge uses Paul Hollywood's recipe, which utilizes rough puff pastry, raspberry jam, Chantilly cream and fresh raspberries.
The texture of a soufflé is hard to describe. It’s much more cake-like than I imagined it would be — soft and moist, yet light as air, it almost melts in the mouth. Every bite was like a soft pillow of rich, creamy chocolatey heaven.
Mary Berry’s mokatines feature a genoise sponge sandwiching a layer of coffee buttercream, surrounded by almonds and decorated with coffee-flavored crème au beurre, then topped with fondant icing. These tiny cakes pack quite a punch with coffee flavor. But for a coffee lover like me, that's not a problem!
Tennis cakes were a big hit in the late 1800s, when lawn tennis became a popular sport that men and women could play together. The cakes were elaborately decorated with candied fruit or royal icing in the shape of tennis balls and racquets. This was the technical challenge for Victorian week in The Great British Bake Off 2015.
Flaounes hail from the island of Cyprus, where they were traditionally made at Eastertime. The sesame-covered pastry is filled with a golden mound of sharp, salty cheese and studded with plump raisins that give your tastebuds a burst of sweetness when you bite into one.
Gluten-Free Pitta (or Pita) Bread
No matter how you spell it ("pita" or "pitta"), these ancient flatbreads are pretty versatile: fill them, wrap them, or dip them. Of the two varieties--Greek pitas or pocket pitas--mine turned out more like the pocketless kind, but they're still delicious!