Bake Off Bake Along 2016 – Patisserie Week


Patisserie week is normally one of my absolute favourites, even though I’m still mourning the loss of chocolate week this year – why you so cruel to us BBC?

This years options were palmiers, which actually looked divine and I love a buttery crunchy biscuit, so when the first bake was announced I was sure I’d do that this week. The technical was a funny sort of fruity soaked sponge in the form of a savarin – which I didn’t much fancy seeing as I’m not much of a fan of soggy cake. Then finally, the big one, the showstopper was….fondant fancies!

Now I love a Mr Kipling version, and on paper they didn’t seem that tricky, so win win for this weeks bake.


I settled on two patisserie flavours – lemon curd, and mocha, both of which seemed delicious and doable.

Having a luxurious long weekend ahead of me, I started the bake in high spirits on Sunday afternoon, whipping up a chocolate chip coffee sponge and a lemon sponge with ginger syrup. So far, so good.

The next stage didn’t actually occur until Monday afternoon, knowing that I have plenty of time until we had to leave for a dinner party that evening – and I was bringing the pud!

I intricately measured the sponges, trying to make them into identical little patisserie cubes, scooped out a little piece from the middle for the hidden surprise. In the mocha cupcakes there was a dash of espresso and a salted caramel baileys buttercream. Whereas in the lemon version I filled them with a tart lemon curd.


For the crumb layer, I was using a coffee buttercream and a lemon buttercream, and it was unbelievably fiddly. So frustratingly so. I stood sticky fingered and struggling to get them smooth for the best part of an hour I reckon. Mum got involved and proclaimed it was far harder than it looked, but eventually I had 40 badly buttercreamed cubes sat in the fridge attempting to harden so I could vaguely smooth them out and make them presentable.

As you can imagine, there is no photo evidence.

I was not even thinking about my camera at this stage, nor would I have attempted to unleash it on the devastation I’d caused in the kitchen!

After mixing up pretty hefty amounts of mocha fondant and yellow fondant (that took 3 attempts to make it less “sunshine” and more “pastel”), I set about learning from the mistakes of this weeks contestants and doing an “Andrew” using a slatted spatula and spooning the fondant over the top covering all sides. After a rotation between two spatulas and time allowing drippage back into the icing bowl, they were carefully lifted off onto the tray to dry off a bit.



As it turns out you need a hell of a lot of fondant to completely cover 40 patisseries! I just about managed 20 of them, drizzling some contrast fondant over the top (too soon I might add, as I’d run out of time before we had to leave) and hastily decorating with lemon zest curls and coffee beans.


In the car, despite the terrible weather I had to sit with the cold air on full blast, the cake stand clutched carefully on my lap. They did end up running a bit, mostly due to the lack of time in the fridge.

However, even though I failed in my haste to get any decent photos at all, there were many positive comments around the table about them, so all effort was certainly not wasted as they were utterly delicious!

In terms of bake off patisserie news, I was so sad that Selasi went out this week, though not that surprised. Whilst he was certainly the loveliest contestant, he wasn’t necessarily the best baker. Funnily enough it also turns out that he works with my uncle too! I’m not sure who I want to win, I guess it will entirely depend on the final! It feels as though this year it’s come around so quickly, and i’m excited to find out what we’ll be baking for this last week!