Episode 3, GBBO 2015, Showstopper

3D Bread Sculpture

Who can forget the famous lion bread sculpture from the 2015 season of The Great British Bake Off? That's what inspired me to make this sun-moon medallion bread sculpture, featuring a dark rye moon and turmeric-basil bread for the sun, surrounded by pesto and mozzarella stuffed rolls for the sun's rays.

Episode 3, GBBO 2015, technical challenge

Baguettes

These iconic loaves are synonymous with France. Tearing into the crisp, golden crust to reveal the chewy open-textured interior is an almost sensual experience.

Episode 3, GBBO 2015, Signature Bake

Quick Bread

This Rye & Stout Soda Bread is an homage to Irish foods and flavors. A thick slice of one of these rustic loaves goes just as easily slathered with butter and preserves with a mug of tea as it does with a bowl of Irish stew.

Episode 3, GBBO 2014, technical challenge

Ciabatta

Ciabatta is Italian for slipper, which these long, flat loaves resemble. The recipe for this technical challenge is, of course, Paul Hollywood’s. He specified that he was looking for a strong crust with a crisp, floury surface and an irregular crumb structure with big, visible air holes. Designed as a sandwich bread, ciabatta will hold up to the hardiest fillings as well as the heat of a panini press.

Episode 3, GBBO 2014, Signature Bake

Rye Bread Rolls

Hot cross buns are not as sweet as sweet rolls, but the added fruits and spices give them a flavor profile on par with any holiday bread. I’ve used cardamom in mine to add warmth, while the orange zest and cranberries lend their sweetness. The orange-and-honey glaze gives them just the right finishing touch with both its tangy sweetness and glossy sheen.

Episode 3, GBBO 2013, Showstopper

Petits Fours (Take 2)

This challenge for the bakers in the Great White Tent was to make 24 petits fours: 12 sponge-based and 12 biscuit-based. I decided to make mini Bakewell tarts and tiny tiramisu cakes.

Episode 3, GBBO 2013, technical challenge

Floating Islands

Îles flottante, eggs in snow, floating islands … a rose by any other name … would still be a dessert consisting of poached meringues floating on a sea of crème anglaise, a vanilla-scented custard thin enough to pour (also called pouring custard).

Episode 3, GBBO 2013, Signature Bake

A Trifle

Despite its humble beginnings, the trifle has become quite an elaborate affair. Nothing to be trifled with, really. It is a feast for the eyes as well as the palate — with layers of sponge or biscuits, fruit and custard, and either jam or fruit-flavored gelatin, all topped with whipped cream or meringue and decorated with fruit or nuts or crumbled biscuits.

Episode 3, GBBO 2012, showstopper

Showstopper Fruit Tart

I decided to make the best fruit tart I could muster using the building blocks of some of the best pastries on the planet—pâte sucrée for the base, crème patissiere for the filling, and beautifully arranged and gorgeously glazed fresh fruits and berries on top.

Episode 3, GBBO 2012, technical challenge

Mary Berry’s Treacle Tart

Harry Potter loves treacle tart so much that he smells it when he is in the presence of the love potion Amortentia. Treacle tart is also so quintessentially British that its main ingredient, golden syrup, originated in the U.K. and is still sold under the original brand name—Tate & Lyle. When I opened the bottle it smelled a lot like pancake syrup, but when I tasted it…Mmmmm! It had a sweet buttery flavor unlike anything I’d ever tried before. I can see why British expats pine for it here in the U.S.