'The Great British Bake Off' dessert week disappoints with least-delicious pudding ever

Katie Archer
·Contributor
·3 min read
Ep8.  Matt and Laura.
Ep8. Matt and Laura.

Mmm, dessert week on The Great British Bake Off... surely the most delicious episode of the contest yet?

We were expecting rich chocolate puddings, decadent pavlovas, perhaps a boozy trifle - but unfortunately, what we got in the technical challenge was a basket of ingredients that didn’t sound particularly tempting.

Read more: Tributes paid to late Bake Off star Luis Troyano

The quarter-finalist bakers were asked to bake Sussex pond puddings, a steamed dessert many of them admitted to not having heard of and were unenthused when they found out what went into it.

Even judge Prue Leith, who said that the recipe from the 1700s was her favourite pudding, admitted that the finished bake didn’t exactly look attractive.

She said: “This is not the prettiest pudding in the world, but it’s sort of surprising, because there’s a whole lemon inside.”

Bakers and viewers alike were horrified by the ingredients, which as Leith said, included a whole lemon along with its rind encased in a steamed pastry made from animal fat suet.

Peter explained: “Suet is the lovely protective fat from animals that surrounds the livers, the kidneys.”

Hermine also seemed revolted by the ancient suet recipe, asking: “I mean does anybody ever use this, in 2020?”

Perhaps Laura summed it up best: “Very medieval... I don’t really fancy eating a whole lemon in a bit of pastry, that’s not how we do it in Gravesend.”

The end product was fairly disastrous as most of the puddings had collapsed into a pond by the time they were turned out onto their plates.

Judges Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith decided that Laura’s was the best of a bad bunch, but complained about the bakers serving up raw pastry that had been under-steamed by at least an hour, and “bullet-hard” lemons.

It was a nightmare challenge for Marc, who said: “I’ve never used suet, I don’t really eat meat.”

Things didn’t get much better on that front for poor Marc in the showstopper, where he had to create a jelly design cake.

As he said while making his jelly: “Thirty-five leaves of gelatine, 35 leaves of pig hide.”

The Great British Bake Off continues on Tuesdays at 8pm on Channel 4.