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Britain's Best Bakery

  • Episode: 

    11 of 30

  • Title: 

    Series two
  • Transmission (TX): 

    Mon 20 Jan 2014
  • TX Confirmed: 

  • Time: 

    4.00pm - 5.00pm
  • Week: 

    Week 04 2014 : Sat 18 Jan - Fri 24 Jan
  • Channel: 

The search for the best independent bakery in the land returns with six weeks of tough competition, as 60 bakeries selected from all over Britain make their bid to take the ultimate accolade.  
Each day brings an array of mouth-watering recipes, regional specialities and delicious treats as the bakeries showcase their true passion for what they do.  From artisan bakers, to cupcake specialists, to pie makers; from family businesses to community enterprises; from youngsters just starting out in their baking careers, to bakers in their 80’s, every baker is putting themselves on the line to be scrutinised by judges Mich Turner and Peter Sidwell. 
Between them the judges have over 35 years of baking experience: renowned cake maker Mich Turner has received an MBE for services to the catering industry, while award winning chef and artisan baker Peter Sidwell is one of the country’s leading bread experts.  Together they’re looking for bakeries with passion and creative flair, willing to push themselves and their breads, bakes and cakes to new and exciting heights. 
With the country divided into five different regions, the judges will set up a new regional judging HQ each week, to put bakeries through their paces in a series of tough culinary challenges.  Each weekday, from Monday to Thursday, three bakeries from the region will go head to head.  The bakeries must bring a selection of their wares for the judges to taste, before battling it out side by side in the HQ kitchen.  After tasting, the judges will select the bakery that will be going through to Friday’s Regional Final. 
In the first challenge, the bakeries set up a Baker’s Table at the judging HQ, creating a display of the best their bakery has to offer.  Each bakery must nominate their Speciality Bake – the item that they believe makes their bakery special - for the first tasting.  As well as delicious food, the judges will be looking for the product that really tells the story of that bakery, and truly represents their region.
The second challenge, the Wild Card Bake, is designed to test the bakeries’ creativity.  All the bakeries have been tasked with creating an original bake incorporating an ingredient and a method chosen by the judges, and must now present the outcome.  Whether it’s chilli and puff pastry, rosemary and bread dough, or lavender and shortbread, the judges are searching for inspiration and innovative flair – with some extraordinary results!
The final challenge sees the bakeries go head to head in the kitchen to make a bake of the judges’ choice – the Bakers’ Dozen.  They have just two hours to a make precise 13 of the same bake, under the watchful eyes of judges Mich and Peter.  All must follow the same recipe, but the bakeries have brought their own ingredients and can add their own creative flourishes.  With the clock ticking the pressure mounts; there’s nowhere to hide as the bakeries must present all 13 of the final bakes for the judges to taste – and quality and consistency are key.
Friday’s Regional Final sees the week’s four winners facing two tough tasks, working side by side and against the clock in the HQ kitchen.  All must make an afternoon tea, with at least five sweet and savoury items, to wow the judges.
And the afternoon is rounded off with the Judge’s Choice Cake, where the four very different bakeries are handed the same ingredients and tasked with making the same technically demanding cake.  Only one of them is going to go through to the last week in the series, National Finals Week.
National Finals Week kicks off with two days of tense high stakes challenges, as the final five bakeries slug it out for a place in the Grand Final.  From baking Chelsea Buns for the Chelsea Pensioners, to creating one hundred sweet and savoury items for Henley Festival goers, only three can hit a high enough bar to make it through.
The last three bakeries now face a nail-biting marathon three day final, where every aspect of their skill as bakers is put to the test.  From baking for profit at London’s Old Spitalfields Market, to creating an iconic bake to put their region on the map, to making a wedding cake for one special couple, every bakery is pushed to the very limit of their ingenuity and stamina – and only one can emerge victorious, to take the crown of Britain’s Best!
Week three:
Monday 20 January 2014
This week judges Mich Turner and Peter Sidwell are putting bakeries from Wales and Central England through a series of tough challenges. Today it’s the turn of three Welsh bakeries to step into the ring.  An elaborate cake maker hopes to impress with a classic Welsh bara brith, while a Brecon baker has trouble with the judge’s brief for a creamed cake.  And the challenge of making 13 perfect choux buns gets two self-taught bakers in a flap.
Tuesday 21 January 2014
The competition heats up in Birmingham as a Caribbean baking mother and daughter spice things up with their jerk chicken, a pair of French baking brothers are keen to show off their Michelin trained pedigree with an ingenious lemongrass creation and two community cupcake bakers take it to the wire making empanadas. 
Wednesday 22 January 2014
Three bakeries from South and West Wales enter the fray, as a traditional father and son team is pitted against a vegetarian baking mother and daughter duo, and a French patisserie maker.  The bakeries’ creativity is tested as they must devise a bake combining coconut and rich shortcrust pastry, before all attempt the perfect pizza dough making calzone in the kitchen.
Thursday 23 January 2014
The competition hits the West Midlands and the Marches as three bakeries vye for a place in Friday’s regional final.  A house husband turned baker creates an unusual stinking bishop scone; a young brother and sister duo grapple with their cake creation using root veg; and a traditional baker finds himself in a sticky situation with his caramel apple crumble tart.  
Friday 24 January 2014
The search for Britain’s Best Bakery reaches the Wales and Central England final. This week’s winners must battle it out in the kitchen, creating an afternoon tea with a mix of both sweet and savoury items, and then their take on a layered lime and coconut cake, all against the clock. Judges Mich and Peter must decide which one of them deserves to go through to National Finals week.