Ultra glam or rustic farmhouse? See inside Kate Barmby’s kitchen
PUBLISHED: 15:25 06 September 2017 | UPDATED: 15:25 06 September 2017
Former Great British Bake Off contestant Kate Barmby talks about the hub of her house - and it’s also where she cooked up her TV recipes
How would you describe your kitchen style?
I have what is fundamentally a farmhouse kitchen, just not in a farmhouse. It is a cosy space that makes people feel relaxed and at home. It is whatever the complete opposite to minimalist is as it is where most of our family life takes place and consequently is very “busy” and full.
The kitchen is often described as the hub of the house. Is yours?
When I was growing up on my parents’ farm our kitchen table was where pretty much everything happened, not just meals. This is very much the case in my own home now. We have a huge oak table that is at the heart of our family life.
What is your favourite part of your kitchen?
I love the fact that I have room for a Christmas tree in my kitchen. It’s incredibly cosy on a winter’s evening to have the lights twinkling while you eat your tea. And least favourite?
The window behind my kitchen sink is just the wrong height for me to see the beautiful view across farmland. It’s also not very large and doesn’t really let in enough light.
Did you come up with all your Great British Bake Off creations there?
I spent hours and hours in my kitchen developing and practicing my Great British Bake Off recipes. I was regularly working late into the night trying to make sure everything was just perfect. You have to keep it a secret that you are a contestant on the show which was really hard because my kitchen is always full of friends and family; it was completely out of character for me to try and keep everyone out of somewhere which is usually such an open and welcoming place.
Which baking gadget can’t you live without?
My favourite gadget is my Kitchen Aid stand mixer. My husband had it imported for me years ago before they were readily available in the UK. It’s a standing joke that I was more emotional about receiving my mixer than I was my engagement ring. However, it is a luxury, and what I couldn’t actually live without are my wooden spoons. Last year, my mum commissioned a lady called Fay to make me a set of wooden spoons and spatulas for my birthday, they are so tactile and I absolutely adore them. They were already truly unique but the patina that is developing as I use them on a daily basis is making them even more personal to me.
Any tips for baking-enthusiasts who are looking to re-vamp their kitchen?
Invest in good quality worktops that won’t melt if you put a hot baking tin down on them and a sink that is large enough to wash up your biggest baking sheets and oven racks. Having stoically helped clear up after all my recipe development, my husband Dave would recommend making sure you install a decent dishwasher!