So who tuned into last night’s Great British Bake Off then? I heard it was very popular and the viewing figures were high. I can’t remember the actual figure off the top of my head but I know I am not alone in my addiction to all things baking. I was glued to the screen last night and thankfully tea was a quick salad so I could be cleaned up and ready to watch it, phone in hand to join in with the live tweeting!
When the Great British Bake Off is on, I DEMAND to be in charge of the remote control. My hubby is usually the one who has it superglued to his side, especially when Top Gear or other motor racing programmes are on. I don’t mind them now and again but I get fed up with the constant repeats on the Dave Channel! So when GBBO is on, then it’s MY time to be glued to the telly. If the phone goes then it gets ignored, sorry!
Later on this week I will be talking about Episode One- Cake week as I attempt to bake the Technical Challenge “Mary’s Angel Cake” so watch this space. I’m not sure how I’m going to get on as I don’t have a special angel cake tin and I have never made it before.
Last Saturday I baked the Crunchy Bacon Soda Bread from the new Great British Bake Off Recipe Book- The Great British Bake Off Everyday. I was keen to try another soda bread recipe as I’m not that experienced with breadmaking. Anything involving yeast sets me into panic mode. So last Saturday I had time to devote to baking the bread without constant interruptions all around. Here’s how it was made:
First of all, my oven was heated up to 200oC (fan temperature) and I lined a baking tray with a sheet of baking parchment.
Fry four rashers of chopped bacon in a frying pan without extra fat.
Finely chop a small onion or shallot.
Once the bacon has started cooling, add in the onion and some chopped thyme. I didn’t have fresh thyme so I used dried instead.
Sift plain flour, bicarbonate of soda and salt into a mixing bowl.
You then add cubes of cold butter which then needs to be rubbed into the floury mixture. This is done until it becomes like breadcrumbs.
Make a well in the centre of the bowl. Then you add in buttermilk to bind the mixture together into a dough.
I made a mistake here and forgot to add the bacon and onion before the buttermilk binding stage! It’s meant to go in first before it is formed into the dough. I hoped the pieces of crunchy bacon wouldn’t fall out all over the place!
The dough is now ready to go in the oven. It was formed into a round about 3-4cm high.
The finished loaf! It took slightly longer in the oven than mentioned in the recipe. The recipe says about 35 minutes but it was nearer 45 minutes. I tested it to see if it was cooked by tapping it underneath to see if it made a hollow sound.
The bread went down very well with a bowl of tomato soup and with butter added. It needed to be eaten on the same day! We had a little bit left the next day but it was a bit stale so I toasted it and ate it with butter.
I will definitely bake this again in the future. It went down well with my husband and son. My son was disappointed when I explained soda bread didn’t have fizzy drinks in it like lemonade but was called that because it has bicarbonate of soda as the raising agent in it! He wasn’t impressed with the baking technical talk though!
Love Sam xx