The Great British Bake Off 2013 Challenge

GBBOI absolutely love BBC2’s ‘The Great British Bake Off’. Its what got me back into baking and prompted me to start this blog. The fourth series started today, and although I feel it has got off to a bit of a rough start (I don’t think I’m good enough to go on that show, but I do have to wonder just what the other 9,987 applicants were like!),  next weeks episode looks to be better. I’ve decided to set myself a little challenge during this years bake off:

Starting from week two, each week I will choose one of the bakes from that weeks show and attempt it myself. Then I’ll write up the experience on here, complete with plenty of photos, regardless of whether it was a success or not. My aim is to undertake the technical challenge of the week, depending on whether its feasible – i.e. do I have (or can I obtain) the right equipment, ingredients, etc. Although if one of the other bakes looks interesting, I’ll happily attempt one of those.

Updated 28/08/2013

Why starting from week two? Well, in a bit of a damp start to this challenge, I’ve decided to skip this weeks bake for the simple reason that there was really only one cake to choose from. The bakers made a Sandwich Cake – which is quite a basic cake, and one that I already have a few examples of on here – and the technical challenge : Angel Food Cake.

I’d really like to try making Angel Food Cake as it involves quite a few new techniques for me, but I don’t currently have a suitable tin, which poses somewhat of a problem. If I can get hold of a tin fairly soon, I will have a crack at it, but I’m not sure this will happen before episode two.

Incidentally, I did make a Victoria Sponge cake a few hours before the first episode aired as a treat to scoff while the show was on, so here are a few photos of that instead! Bring on week two – its all about bread!

Update: Someone tweeted a link to this blog post, which details an Angel Food Cake being made in a Bundt tin. I didn’t previously own a Bundt tin either, but when I went shopping this week, there was one in the supermarket, so I picked one up and made Angel Food Cake with it! I’m very pleased with the results, and a full write-up with photos will follow.

Victoria Sponge Batter in Tins

Batter Evenly Distributed, Ready For The Oven…

Victoria Sponge Layers

25 Minutes Later, Baked Victoria Sponge Layers Cooling…


The Finished Cake

The Finished Cake

Victoria Sponge Cake Recipe

From: Rob Tucker
Prep Time: 20 Mins
Cooking Time: 25 Mins
Total Time: 45 Mins


  • 225g Plain Flour
  • 225g Caster Sugar
  • 225g Unsalted Butter (Softened)
  • 4 Medium Eggs
  • 2tsp Baking Powder
  • 1tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 2tbsp Milk


  1. Place the sugar and butter into a mixer or large mixing bowl and cream together. Add the flour, baking powder, milk, vanilla essence and the eggs. Mix it all together using a hand or electric mixer (or even with the wooden spoon if you like) until fully combined and smooth.
  2. Distribute the mixture evenly between two greased and lined 8″ round cake tins and place on the bottom shelf of a pre-heated oven at 180 degrees celsius. Leave in the oven for around 25 minutes (your oven may vary), and remove when a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  3. Remove from the oven and allow the cake layers to cool in their tins for a couple of minutes, and remove to a wire rack until fully cooled. Then sandwich with a layer of strawberry or raspberry jam and vanilla buttercream. Finally dust with a little icing sugar.

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