Episode 10, GBBO 2012, Signature Bake

A Pithivier

For this signature challenge, Paul and Mary specified a pithivier with a savory filling. It being the end of summer, I had plenty of tomatoes, a few sweet peppers and a freshly made batch of pesto on hand. I love how roasting vegetables brings out the sweetness by caramelizing their naturally occurring sugars. It does the same to garlic, mellowing its flavor.

Episode 9, GBBO 2012, Signature Bake

Petits Fours

The challenge—to create three different kinds of petits fours (like the canapés of desserts) using different baking techniques—seemed like a test of all that the bakers on The Great British Baking Show had learned so far. For my petits fours, I made chocolate macarons with mocha ganache filling; lime, mint & white chocolate mousse tartlets; and raspberry–chocolate mousse in chocolate cups.

Episode 7, GBBO 2012, Signature Bake

Sweet Buns

Because I love cinnamon rolls, and I grew up with my mom’s recipe for cinnamon rolls, I wanted to use her recipe. But I wanted to put my own spin on it. A couple spins really. I know it's not a revolutionary combination, by any means, but a maple-bacon cinnamon-cardamom roll sounded like a little bit of heaven to me, so I set out to create it!

Episode 6, GBBO 2012, Signature Bake

Sponge Puddings

So we’re going from American pie last week to British puddings this week. Any American who’s watched The Great British Baking Show for a season or more realizes that what the British mean by pudding isn’t what Americans call pudding. What we in the U.S. usually consider pudding is generally referred to as custard on the other… Continue reading Sponge Puddings

Episode 5, GBBO 2012, Signature Bake

A Wellington

For this challenge, Paul and Mary only specified that the Wellington be at least 8 inches long and be completely covered in pastry. They didn’t specify what the filling should be. I decided to use a turkey breast stuffed with cheese, wrapped in prosciutto and then pastry.

Episode 4, GBBO 2012, Signature Bake

Torte Cake

One of my favorite flavor combinations is chocolate and orange. So when the Great British Baking Show tasked its contestants with baking a torte cake with multiple layers of filling, it was more than intuition that prompted me to choose these two flavors. Wanting to infuse my orange filling with the essence of fresh oranges, I chose a recipe for orange curd. My complementary filling would be a simple chocolate mousse, and I planned to enrobe the entire torte in a chocolate ganache. To top it all off, and add even more intense orange flavor, I decided to make candied orange zest to use as a garnish.

Episode 3, GBBO 2012, Signature Bake

Tarte Tatin

Basically, the tarte tatin is an upside-down pie, usually apple, with the fruit caramelized in butter and sugar on the stove before being topped with pastry and baked. After baking, the tart is turned upside down onto a plate so the fruit is on top, covered with a golden caramel sauce.

Episode 1, GBBO 2012, Signature Bake

My First Baking Challenge: Upside-Down Cake

After lifting the bottom of the pan off of the parchment paper I had lined it with, I was able to peel back the paper to reveal the dark brown, gooey caramel coating and the apple ring topping of my now right-side up upside-down cake!