Norfolk’s Bake Off hopeful battered her competitors once again in bread week
- Credit: PA
She had everything to prove and Norfolk's Kate Barmby duly rose to the occasion in Great British Bake-Off's Bread Week, sailing through to batter her competitors into submission ahead of next week's challenge.
Nurse Kate opened well: 'I'm a bloomers and baps girl,' she told presenters Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins, before beginning the 'chocolate bread' challenge on last night's BBC1 show with Kate's Cobbled Loaf.
Not only did the loaf contain chocolate (and cardamom, orange and vanilla), and therefore hit the brief, it was also a nod to her husband's grandmother, Nanny Cobbold, whose name sounds a bit like Cobbled.
'There's a little surprise in the middle of each one,' said judge Mary Berry of the 'cobbles' that made up Kate's loaf.
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Sadly, the surprise, as Paul Hollywood pointed out, was that the loaf was somewhat raw inside.
The technical challenge was to make dampfnudel, a German bun/dumpling hybrid steamed in milk ('a bit like an iced bun without the icing,' said Mary, effectively killing any prospective love for dampfnudel in one put-down).
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'I don't know what I'm doing,' said Kate, 'so if I get it horribly wrong, these will still be the best dampfnudel I have ever made.'
After following instructions, Kate made rising dampf (good) but then achieved a black bottom (bad) – but triumph was just a bake away: for the showstopper, the contestants were tasked with making a savoury plaited centerpiece.
Kate was all over this like dampfnudel in milk: 'I have combined two traditions that we have in our family, one is making corn dolls, the other is making harvest plaits.'
While plaiting, she added: 'I used to do this with my pony's tail.'
Minus the baking, we imagine.
The Corn Maiden married beer-flavoured rye bread with goats' cheese and onion focaccia and spelt ears of corn filled with cheddar and looked a little like a prop from The Blair Witch Project.
'That is a fantastic loaf,' purred Paul before Mary gave Kate the ultimate accolade about her labour of loaf: 'I want to come on your next picnic.'
Safely through to Batter Week next Wednesday, Kate watched sadly as Michael Georgiou, Bake Off's youngest contestant, became yeast-erday's man, leaving the show despite his impressive tactic of serving 45 per cent proof spirit alongside his bread-based celebration of Cypriot independence.
For him, it was all dough-ver - Kate bakes on.